There are two ways to look at hope:
- A worldly hope which is based on a desire alone
- A Christian hope which is based on the promises of One who can deliver
The first looks like this: You see the "cool things" in the world, or you see people who are better off (financially, health-wise, suffering less) and you really want what they have. You think about it all the time and you believe that you would enjoy life more if you had what they have. You might buy a lottery ticket in the hope that you could win money and solve many of these problems. You might even work long hours, sacrificing much, in order to get ahead and achieve what you hope for.
The second looks like this: You see the "cool things" and those who are better off, but these things are not your main desire. What you want is to be free from yourself, and the sinfulness and weakness in your flesh which drags you down. You want your children to grow up to be wise. You would like good (physical) things for your family but you realise that these things are not the be-all-and-end-all, that you can work hard and still not guarantee the acquisition of these things. Instead, you trust God to give you all that you require, and if he chooses to give you little now it is still more than you deserve. In the long run, God will grant you eternal life, filled with everlasting joy in the presence of the Lord, because you trust in Him to save you. for now, you hope to faithfully represent your God, becoming closer in nature to Christ, your saviour.
The second is trusting on One who has all of the power to deliver exactly what you need to achieve everything that you should hope for... and more! If God can make a universe, He can grant me all that I hope in Him for. If you trust in yourself, your hope is empty.
"I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth." - Psalm 121:1-2