Somewhere Between Hopefully and Probably


We believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God.  John 6:69, KJV

Most people live between hopefully and probably.  They hope they will, but think they probably won’t.  They are hopeful, and they believe victory is probable, but they’re never quite sure.

Most people aren’t sure.  Most people aren’t confident. Most people don’t believe.  They live between hoping and knowing, wishing and trusting, longing and realizing. There’s a big difference between the two extremes, and while balance is good, their aim is not to rock the boat, not to offend, not to go too far one way or the other.  They’re neither up nor down, in nor out, cloose nor far; they’re just somewhere between.

Most people live in between. They’re not that bad, but then again, they’re not that good. Most people are unsure, unclear, and uncertain. They’re not hot or cold, but, like the Laodiceans, they are lukewarm – tepid and insipid, flat and fleeting, blah and bland. They whiff and waffle, toss and topple, and never take root downward in order to bear fruit upward.

Most people don’t have great faith. The team that will win the Super Bowl is full of great players and great athletes and is a great team that believes. Great players don’t hope, they know; great athletes don’t wish, they trust; great teams don’t just desire to win, they determine to win.

Somewhere between hopefully and probably is not the address of those who believe. Somewhere between hopefully and probably is not the locale of the bold and the brave.  Somewhere in between is not the domicile of the gutsy and the gallant.  In turn, those who know, trust and rely on God understand that we live in a purposive universe.  We believe in the God of the universe, and this God created all things with and for a purpose.  Even sports.

We do not live in between. We believe that “all the ways of God are meaningful” and that “there is an ultimate Divine Omega which is implicit in an original Alpha and that all that God Does in the meantime has a significant relation to the purpose of the process.”[1] That is why “we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28, KJV).

So where are you? Are you between hopefully and probably?  Hopefully not, but I fear it’s probably so. What do you believe? What are your sure of? Who do you trust? The God of the Bible is the only one we can trust, rely on and totally depend on. There is no one like Him.  We “believe  that there is meaning in things, and that this meaning, to some  extent evident to rational reflection, is augmented  and clarified when seen in the light of the revelation.”[2]  This revelation is seen in all of creation, and in life, and in sports.

My Eagles believe.  The players, the fans and all of Philly believe that the Eagles will win their first home playoff game in what seems like forever against the New Orleans Saints. Will they win? Hopefully. Can they win? Probably.  But we do believe. And that’s better than being stuck in no man’s land between no place and nowhere, having no confidence, no commitment and no conviction.  Yet and still, while we believe, we also realize that it’s only a game, but clearly it’s not JUST a game.

[1] Edwin Lewis, “A Philosophy of the Christian Religion” (New York: Harper and Brothers Publishers), 1940, p. 4.

[2] Ibid.

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