Monday, October 12, 2015

That Which Keeps Us Going

“We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.” ~ Hebrews 6:19

Being raised as a pastor’s kid in Southern Baptist churches, I learned early on the beauty of acronyms. We must choose to hold on despite the lurking fear. We must hope past the pain. Hope past the fatigue. Hope past the subjective feelings I'm experiencing. 

 I came up with these:


Occurs (w/)

What comes to your mind?

Christian hope isn’t just a flimsy wish: as such--there’s no precipitation in the forecast, but I hope it rains anyway. There’s little confidence of it happening, but we throw out our cosmic hope, like blowing out a birthday candle and expecting little in return. No, indeed that isn't our definition of hope. As believers in Almighty God, our hope is solid.

The hope that God gives us and the hope that Peter calls us to isn’t one of fragile whims (I Peter 1:3-6). It’s a sure thing. What God says He’ll do, He’ll do. His assurances, His deep love, His promises restore perspective and grace us with hope.

·         He promises to never leave or forsake us (Deut. 31:6).
·         His will always love us (Romans 8:38-39).
·         He is faithful to forgive (1 John 1:9).
·         He will work out all things for good, to those who love Him (Romans 8:28).
·         He cares about what is going on. (I Peter 5:7).
·         He promises we’ll live forever if we believe in Him (John 11:25-26).
·         He will meet all our needs (Phil. 4:19).
·         He will always be truthful with us (Titus 1:2).
·         He gives us rest (Matt. 11:28-29).
·         He gifts us with peace (John 14:27).

2 Corinthians 1:20 (ESV)

“20 For all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory.”
Being a task-driven, achievement-driven, overly-responsible, guilt-prone firstborn, I often tackle my spiritual relationship as I do every other aspect of my life: with duty. But last year, God renewed my understanding of a particular verse. I’d read Isaiah 30:15 before that study, but this time my exposure to it stuck at a different angle in my heart. We don’t acquire our salvation through striving and duty; it’s through repenting and returning and then resting in Him that God covers us. And my strength doesn’t come in fixing, doing, achieving, and beating myself up to be better. My power to overcome flows from a quiet trust in the Lord. I merely need to rest in faith before Him, listening to His voice…not all the others.
In Jesus Calling, Sarah Young proposes our Savior and Lover saying something along these lines:
                        “Many people turn away from Me when they are exhausted. They associate Me
                        with duty and diligence, so they try to hide from My Presence when they need
                        a break from work. How this saddens Me!” (Young, July 21)

 Our hope can only generate from outside ourselves; otherwise, we are hopeless creatures destined for a life of destruction and an eternity of separation from all hope and joy. But, in Him, overflows ALL hope and joy and peace. Regardless of what shadows fall across your spirit today, know that He will fill us, carry us, and renew us by the power of His loving Spirit. Glorious Hope!

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