I preached today on hope.  Here is part of it:

It is tempting to give up hope sometimes, whether it is on a personal objective, a relationship, a medical issue, a relationship with God, or something else.

When we face heartbreak, rejection, hurt, impossible odds, confusion, etc., we often use coping mechanisms and one of those is giving up hope.

But Jesus tells us “with God all things are possible.”  (Matthew 19:26)  And nothing is too hard for God. (Gen. 18:14).  Indeed, Jesus tells us “everything is possible for one who believes.” (Mark 9:23).

Of course, I have no idea if the things that are weighing on you and me are going to resolve the way we want.

But Jesus tells us, with God, all things are possible.  So, they *might* resolve the way we want.

What do we do with that?

The Apostle Paul wrote to the Christians in Rome to tell them.

They needed encouraging, as they faced much persecution.

One of the things Paul said to them is “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”  (Romans 15:13)

So, Paul didn’t send wishes that everything resolve the way the Roman Christians wanted them to resolve.

And Paul didn’t send instructions that everything was spelled out for the Roman Christians in scripture.

Paul’s desire instead was for the Roman Christians to be filled with joy and peace while they trusted God.  And that that they would overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

This is hard for me.  I want everything to resolve the way I want and I want to find the rules for everything set out exactly.

But what the Bible suggests I do is trust God, don’t give up hope, strengthen my belief, recognize all things—even the impossible—are possible with God, and anticipate joy and peace while I trust in God, so that I may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Paul’s words seem like an appropriate blessing for all of us as we go: “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”  (Romans 15:13)

 


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Sources & Notes

Picture by marcelkessler at pixabay