Photo by Vladimir Solomyani on Unsplash

It’s interesting to me that this little phrase, “In God we trust,” has become a point of debate within some circles. It is on our currency and we find it in other public places. Clearly, the reason that the phrase causes problems in the public sphere is that we are to be an inclusive country and that the government is not to establish any religion. Whenever this conversation gets brought up it amazes me that many in my tribe want to fight hard to keep such phrases rooted in the government.

As a pastor, I suppose I should want to see this idea everywhere. Many would assume that I would be fighting to keep “in God we trust” on our currency and court room walls. Yet, I don’t see it that way. I think that in some weird way, fighting for these things actually communicates the opposite of what it is that we’re really trying to accomplish.

This morning I read Psalm 20 and and in verse 7 the psalmist writes,

Some trust in chariots and others in horses, but we depend on the Lord our God.

I think many of us in the Church have come to a place where we are afraid of losing power, position, and status in the culture. We are afraid of becoming a minority group. There is a sense that we are “losing” our country.

The reality is that as a follower of Jesus there is no “country” for us. The Scriptures are clear that we are aliens in a foreign land.

How does any of this connect to Advent and this week’s theme of hope? Great question.

Honestly, it comes down to this: What is the object of my hope? Psalm 20 is beautiful because it shows that the king, David, was hoping and trusting in his Lord, not himself. He was a man of great power and even in that power his trust and hope was in God.

Verse 7 is the culmination of the psalm, it is an exuberant shout of joyful exclamation to the reality of who God is.

We don’t anyone to defend God. We don’t need anyone to save us from “the world.” What we need is to hope in our God, the one who saves.

Where is your hope?

Originally published at on December 8, 2018.