But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters, about those who have died, so that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope. I Thessalonians 4:13
At the beginning of the football season, it is good to talk about hope.  
–I know the Gamecocks are rebuilding, but I HOPE they have a great year that sets the tone for the future.
–I know Clemson is not picked to win back to back titles, but I sure HOPE they do.
–I HOPE Presbyterian College wins a few games this year. (What can I say?  PC fans have low expectations)
While these hopes I have for the future are not certain- some might even call them wishful thinking- the Christian HOPE is something different entirely.  When Paul writes about the HOPE we have as believers, it is more than wishful thinking, because our HOPE is grounded in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  We do not base our HOPE on things that might be; we base our HOPE on things that have been and continue to be.  Jesus has already won!  Death is already defeated!  Our lives and our eternity are already planned out, and since what God delcares is always true, our HOPE is sure and certain.
There are more things in this life that are uncertain besides football, but one certainty we have is the Christian HOPE!
Thanks be to God!