hope, peace and joy !
Acts 18.12-23 - Acts, #64
What oxygen is for the lungs,
such is hope for the meaning of human life.
Take oxygen away and death occurs through suffocation,
take hope away and humanity is constricted through lack of breath; despair and hopelessness set in.1
If we will grab ahold of it, scripture will go straight to our hearts to penetrate our thoughts and guide us. i know of which I speak; scripture is so far beyond the written word.
In the last year and a half, I have oft recalled these words:
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
Even before Paul penned those words to the Romans, he trusted in Christ to be filled with hope, so that he could keep going...keep traveling when he was worn to the bone...continuing to face the opposition, debating, reasoning, trying to show the life-altering Gospel to all he encountered. Consider this passage here in Acts 18: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts+18.12-23&version=NLT. Ah, but you say, those verses do nothing to encourage me right now. On the contrary, Friend, we take courage by seeing how others who have gone before us persevered, and in triumph at that!
I have written out those precious words, memorized them and have prayed them over people ... so powerful: 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.
Having just returned from a cross-country flight, it is easy to recall the flight attendant holding the life vest, demonstrating putting on an oxygen mask in order to save myself should the worst happen. Just so, I have learned to pray these precious words for myself: May the God of hope fill me with all joy and peace as I trust in him, so that I may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. I cannot share the peace of God to anyone else if I am suffocating for lack of peace myself.
Effective prayer tool: pray God’s Word back to him and watch him move in your life.
God is the source of our hope.
When we fully trust him,
he alone can fill us with joy and peace,
And then cause us to overflow with hope!
All because of the power of the Holy Spirit at work in our lives.
Sometimes, it takes time.
But hear me:
God is trustworthy, he is able and he is good.
He is the source of all hope and worthy of our trust.
Only he can fill us with joy and peace
And he oft does it in mysterious ways
Go ahead, write out Romans 15.13 for yourself; carry it with you, pray it.
And to make you smile, look at the hope in this little guy:
A man approached a little league baseball game one afternoon. He asked a boy in the dugout what the score was.
The boy responded, "Eighteen to nothing--we're behind."
"Boy," said the spectator, "I'll bet you're discouraged."
"Why should I be discouraged?" replied the little boy. "We haven't even gotten up to bat yet!"
Hang in there ... God has you in the palm of his hand, Friend.2
Morning by Morning: great song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7r0x4UMekkY
With all of my heart,
1 - Dr. Emil Brunner
2 - Isaiah 49.16