May 29, 2017

Romans 15:4 ~ Hope

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{This final week of 2015 we will be re-visiting some of my personal favorite themes on which our wonderful writers have shared with us throughout this past year.  I hope that you (as I was, too!) will be encouraged and reminded of God’s faithfulness and loving care through their inspired words.}

For whatever was written in former days
was written for our instruction,
that through endurance
and through the encouragement of the Scriptures
we might have hope.
Romans 15:4 ESV

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This week, here on the Seeking Him devotional blog, we have begun a mini-series on the subject of HOPE.  Our devotional writers have brought light to the verse highlighted above truly bringing us ‘the encouragement of the Scriptures.’  Here are a few of their thoughts….

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In Positive Attitude, Tina wrote about a woman in the Old Testament who had great hope…

“God gave hope to Hannah.  Hannah was barren.  She went to the temple and prayed for God to take away her shame.  When the prophet, Eli saw her praying, he thought that she was drunk instead and questioned to her. When she explained she was praying for what she requested of the Lord yearly, Eli sent her on her way, asking God to grant her request.  And God did.  She gave birth to a son, Samuel, whom she dedicated to the Lord.  She was also blessed with other sons and daughters for her faithfulness. (Click here to read this account.)

God still shows up in this way today…There is power in prayer and belief.  Within these lies our hope.”

In Hope Waits, Ahmee shared that having hope means we wait…

“Waiting goes hand in hand with hope.

Sometimes it’s a matter of seconds…sometimes it’s a matter of years.  Hope can be lost.  Hope can be found.  We can temporarily lose sight of the hope that we hold.  Hope is something that we have to focus on; something that is actually intentional.  Hope helps you keep a smile on your face when it’s raining.  Hope is a matter of perspective, but also, knowing that we are loved by the Creator of the world who only wants good for us.  With God, the hope we have has a real chance of actualizing.  Otherwise, we are just wishing for good things to happen.

God has promised us many things in His Word, and because of this it is possible for us to have hope.”

In Spiritual Hope, Ann reminded us of the hope that the Word of God gives us…

“The Word of God always gives comfort and strength.
The Word of God is an oasis of hope.

Believing the Word of God and living by it takes us from the arena of hope into faith.

And hope maketh not ashamed
because the love of God
is shed abroad in our hearts
by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.
Romans 5:5

That means hope never disappoints. The reason it does not disappoint is that the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit.  Hope is one of the three creative principles of the human spirit. They are also abiding principles.

And now abideth faith, hope, love, these three;
but the greatest of these is love.
1 Corinthians 13:13

Meaning that when all else fails, these three principles will remain and not pass away.  They are given to us and are in our spirits.  We are to choose to act on faith, to always be hopeful towards God, and to walk in love.”

In Circle of Hope, Cynda gave us a great example of how biblical hope works…

Scripture
Purpose = Instruction
Result = Hope

“The purpose of Scripture is our instruction.  The Scriptures encourage us to persevere, to endure.  They offer us comfort and give us hope. Psalm 119 reiterates how closely hope is tied to the instruction of Scripture. Look at the following verses:

Do not snatch Your Word of truth from me,
for Your regulations are my only hope.
verse 43 NLT

You are my Refuge and my Shield;
Your Word is my source of hope.
verse 114 NLT

This is the circle of hope—the more we seek God through His Word…the stronger our hope becomes; the stronger our hope…the more we seek God.  This serves us well in times of trouble.  Instead of being filled with despair, we can remember the nature of God and be filled with hope.”

The King Is Among Us

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

All our fathers saw
In the days of old
Would you do it again
Do it again
All the stories told
All the miracles
Would you do it again
Do it again

You said “Consecrate yourselves to Me
And you will see amazing things”

We need Your revival
Holy Spirit fire
Burning ever brighter
In our souls
Kings and kingdoms falling
Hear your people calling
King of Kings we need a miracle

There’s a time to sow
And a time to reap
Would you do it again
Do it again
There’s a time to heal
And a time to build
Would you do it again
Do it again

The King is among us
And His glory surrounds us
And His fire is falling as we sing
The Savior is for us
And His love is victorious
And revival is rising in His name

Elevation Worship
Mack Brock, Chris Brown, Steven Furtick, Wade Joye, Matt Redman

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Every single word in the Bible is true!  

Every story and every miracle and every word written was given by our Heavenly Father…to you and for you.  How often do you read it?  Is it just a coffee table book that collects dust?  Or is it a memory that you received in fifth grade for Promotion Sunday and you used to read it then (when the teacher called on you).

We are about to step into a new year, friends, and it’s always a time to reflect on what has been and also to move forward with change.  And what better way to start a new year than to begin in His Word? Because He really is among us.  He longs to walk with you daily, into whatever it is that you’re facing.  He longs to give you the peace that you so desperately need and have been longing for.  He wants to give you a hope in His Son, Jesus.  And He wants to save your life.

So as you listen to this song today, I pray that the Spirit moves in your heart.  And that whatever change is needed in your life, that you will allow God to show you and allow Him to help you move forward, leaving all the past exactly where it needs to be—in the past.  I pray that you have a great 2016!   May God bless you and be with you!

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Dear God, thank You for the opportunity to share with these friends every week. I pray that You move in each one of their lives as You see need. Bring them peace and hope and joy. May they walk with You into this great new year and see it as an opportunity to get to know You better. Help us to stay in Your Word and to share it with all who will listen. We love You and we praise You! In Jesus’ name, amen.

He Still Fulfills

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In those days Mary set out and hurried to a town in the hill country of Judah where she entered Zechariah’s house and greeted Elizabeth.  When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped inside her,  and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.  Then she exclaimed with a loud cry:

“You are the most blessed of women, and your child will be blessed!

How could this happen to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?  For you see, when the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby leaped for joy inside me!  She who has believed is blessed because what was spoken to her by the Lord will be fulfilled!”

Luke 1:39-45

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I remember the months before each one of my children were born…and the excitement and fear all wrapped into one emotion.  And what made it even better?  If a few friends were pregnant at the same time, too.  There is something about sharing those times.  And Mary was no different.

Yes, she was carrying the Savior of the world but she was also just a girl, a simple one at that, excited about sharing this time with her cousin who was also with child.  The children would be cousins and friends.  I imagine their conversations went late into the night.  Talks of swollen feet and aching backs.  Maybe of how ready they were to meet each baby.  Yes, they were ready!

“How could this happen to me, the mother of my Lord should come to me?”  Elizabeth got to touch the belly where Jesus was.  And today, He lives inside of us.  We are the blessed ones.  We are the ones full of joy.  So what will we do with it—this excitement?  Who will we share the good news with?  There is a hurting world that has lost some of it’s hope.  And we know that Jesus is the answer  to it all.

Yes, He  came as a small little baby but grew into a man who would lead a group of disciples. They would love Him so much that they would leave it all behind, just to follow Him wherever He would go. He would give sight to the blind and hearing to the deaf.  He would love the least of these, feeling more at home with them. He loved all people so much that He would ultimately die for each one. Even you!  He is coming again here to earth to take us to Heaven to live there forever. I get chills just thinking about it.

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But there are some who are still lost and hurting this Christmas season.  If this is you, and you don’t know Jesus, I urge you to pray this prayer with me.

Dear God, I know that I am a sinner and I need a Savior. I am so tired of doing this on my own. I believe that Jesus is Your Son and that He died to take away all sin, including mine. I will get to live with You forever. Please forgive me for my sins. I trust You now with my life. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Breath Of Heaven

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I have traveled many moonless nights
Cold and weary with a babe inside
And I wonder what I’ve done
Holy Father, You have come
And chosen me now to carry Your Son

I am waiting in a silent prayer
I am frightened by the load I bear
In a world as cold as stone
Must I walk this path alone
Be with me now, be with me now

Breath of heaven
Hold me together
Be forever near me
Breath of heaven

Breath of heaven
Lighten my darkness
Pour over me Your holiness
For You are holy
Breath of heaven

Do you wonder as you watch my face
If a wiser one should have had my place
But I offer all I am
For the mercy of Your plan
Help me be strong
Help me be…Help me

Sara Groves
written by Chris Eaton and Amy Grant

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This song—a depiction of Mary’s heart as she prepares to give birth to God’s Son—is such a simple prayer, too… Can’t you just imagine Mary singing it under her own breath?  No one really could ever fully understand Mary’s heart as she gives birth to her Son, Who is her Savior, her Redeemer, Emmanuel.  Perhaps in a small way (especially those who have also labored and delivered a baby) we can empathize a bit with her feelings.  But I do believe we can (we DO!) at times also sing/plead this same prayer.  How about you…been there?  Me, too.

Breath of heaven, hold me together!
Be forever near me, Breath of heaven!
Breath of heaven, 
lighten my darkness
Pour over me Your holiness…for You are holy!

This is a prayer I know He will answer…the Scriptures assure us that it is so.

For in Him all things were created…
all things have been created through Him and for Him.
He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.
Colossians 1:16 and 17

O Lord, You have searched me and known me.
You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
You understand my thought from afar.
You scrutinize my path and my lying down,
And are intimately acquainted with all my ways.
Even before there is a word on my tongue,
Behold, O Lord, You know it all.
You have enclosed me behind and before,
And laid Your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
It is too high, I cannot attain to it.
Psalms 139:1-6

You know me inside and out, You hold me together
Psalm 41:12

Don’t the lyrics of this chorus just capture so much what we feel—our total dependence on the Lord for everything we need.  And because Emmanuel has come, our Help is here.

Just like Mary, we also recognize our great need for hope to cling to.  She grew up knowing and believing the promises made throughout the Old Testament of a Redeemer, a Savior.  She clung to the words spoken by the Angel Gabriel telling her of the greatness of this baby she was carrying.

For with God nothing [is or ever] shall be impossible.
Luke 1:37

We also know and believe this same Truth as well as the promises that God has made to us…not only of our Lord’s Coming but also of His second Coming!

Mary, I am sure, had moments of fear and worry and despair, but she had been given a promise and she knew that holding on to that promise was ultimately not only all she had but all she needed.  We, too, should follow Mary’s example.  For nothing shall be impossible with God!  We, too, have the hope of being blessed by God’s goodness and faithfulness and grace to cling to!

Let us seize and hold tightly the confession of our hope without wavering,
for He who promised is reliable and trustworthy and faithful [to His Word]…
Hebrews 10:23

Knowing of the great love that God has for mankind (for you…and for me!), we have faith and hope and trust in His ability to ‘hold us together’ and to ‘be forever near me’.  I am praying and asking God to encourage you, my friend, and remind you that He loves you.

But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us.
For I am convinced that neither death, nor life,
nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come,
nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing,
will be able to separate us from the love of God,
which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 8:37-39

God Has Come To Earth

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All praise to You, eternal Lord
Clothed in a garb of flesh and blood
You chose a manger for Your throne
While worlds on worlds are Yours alone

Once did the skies before You bow
A virgin’s arms cradle You now
And angels who in You rejoice
Now listen for Your infant voice
They sing

Glory in the highest
For there’s no other name by which we can be saved
Glory in the highest
Heaven and Earth forever will proclaim
God has come to Earth

O, little Child, You are our guest
That weary ones in You may rest
Forlorn and lowly is Your birth
That we may rise to Heaven from Earth
Singing

O come let us adore Him
O come let us adore Him
O come let us adore Him
O come let us adore Him

And there’s no other name by which we can be saved
And Heaven and Earth forever will proclaim

God has come to Earth
God has come to Earth
God has come to Earth

Aaron Shust

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And Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family line of David, to be registered along with Mary, who was engaged to him and was pregnant.  While they were there, the time came for her to give birth.  Then she gave birth to her firstborn Son, and she wrapped Him snugly in cloth and laid Him in a feeding trough—because there was no room for them at the lodging place.

Luke 2:4-7

His first throne was a manger.  And now, He is seated at the right hand of His Father.  This baby, born to Joseph and Mary, would change the world forever!

Jesus was born to walk the earth.  He went through things—hard things—so that we could see that all would be OK.  He taught us how to love and how to serve.  He showed us that it is awesome to be friends with sinners…because there are no perfect people, except Him. He performed miracle after miracle, just to prove Who His Father is, so that all would believe and live eternally with Him.

He brought dead to life and restored sight to the blind.  He healed by just a touch.  And, oh how He loved!  Everyone He came in contact with went away better.  And then He died on a cross, broken and poured out for us. He crushed every sin we would ever commit so that we, too, could live with Him in heaven.

So let’s adore Him today as they did on that night so long ago…

Suddenly there was a multitude of the heavenly host with the angel,
praising God and saying:
Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and peace on earth to people He favors!
Luke 2:13-14

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Let us pray: Dearest God, oh how we love You!  Oh, how we worship You and bow down at Your feet.  We lay down all our burdens today and we ask that You take our worries.  Thank You that You are for us and that nothing that we have done can separate us from You.  Help us to remember what this season is about; and to not get so wrapped up in the gifts that we don’t have, but to remember the only Gift that we need…You, Jesus.  Remind us, too, that the same miracles that happened back then can happen today.  You are enough!  In Jesus’ name, amen.

A Little Hope

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Well it’s safe to say we’ve probably never met
Even still if a betting man was I I’d bet
Every single one of us have found ourselves
Standing in the storms of life soaking wet

But do not fret, chin up my friend
A little bit of rain is not how this thing ends
But sometimes we forget so if you understand
Let me see those hands, ’cause

Everybody needs a little hope
You know the kind that turns your grey skies blue
A little something that’ll pull you through
Well good news that something’s living right inside of you

Yeah Hope
It makes you smile when world says don’t
It keeps you dancing even when life won’t
And when the music’s gone keep singing
‘Cause what you’ve got is hope

Now maybe you’re thinking ‘yeah, nice try’
But you do not know me you don’t know the things I hide
Well I’ve walked that road and I’ve felt that pain
We are all the same

Come and you’ll find rest
This hope is bigger than your regrets
Bring your worst
Bring your best
And all God’s people said 

MercyMe
Written by Bart Millard, Christopher Stevens, & Bryan Fowler

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Now may the God of hope
fill you with all joy and peace
as you believe in Him
so that you may overflow with hope
by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Romans 15:13 HCSB

My soul, wait in silence for God only,
For my hope is from Him.
Psalm 62:5 NASB

Christ Jesus, our Hope
1 Timothy 1:1a NASB

This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls….
Hebrews 6:19 NLT

“Everybody needs a little hope.”

Now, isn’t that the truth?  I don’t know about y’all, but I need hope even when things are going well.  Hope keeps me moving forward.  Hope lifts my spirits. But, I have to check the source of my hope.  We can put our hope in a job, a relationship, a new home, new clothes, etc.  These things can give us hope, but it is only fleeting.  There is only one true source of —Jesus Christ (1 Timothy 1:1). God alone is the Author of our hope.   The only way we are continually filled with His hope is through the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13). Because of the Holy Spirit, Hope is living right inside of us!

I love how Hebrews 6:19 describes hope— ‘a strong and trustworthy anchor’.  I picture a small boat being rocked by huge waves, tossed to & fro by strong winds, held firmly in place by an anchor.   When we are tossed about by life’s struggles, when circumstances threaten to overwhelm us, our Almighty Anchor of Hope holds our souls firmly in place.  That Anchor of Hope will pull us through the trials and tragedies of this life.  That is enough to make me:

smile when the world says “don’t”
keep dancing even when life won’t
keep singing when the music is gone

My Hope Is Built On Nothing Less

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My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness
I dare not trust the sweetest frame
But wholly lean on Jesus’ name

When darkness seems to veil His face
I rest on His unchanging grace
In every high and stormy gale
My anchor holds within the veil

His oath, His covenant and blood
Support me in the ‘whelming flood
When all around my soul gives way
He then is all my hope and stay

On Christ the solid rock I stand
All other ground is sinking sand
On Christ the solid rock I stand
All other ground is sinking sand

When the last trumpet’s voice shall sound
O may I then in Him be found
Clothed in His righteousness alone
Faultless to stand before His throne

Sovereign Grace Music
Words by Edward Mote (1797-1874)

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We use the word ‘hope’ often in our daily lives.  We hope it’s a sunny day, we hope there are good sales when we go to the grocery store, we hope we sleep well at night.  There’s also the more serious hopes.  We hope our kids stay healthy, we hope we get the job promotion, we hope our budget stretches to the end of the month, we hope we make it to Heaven.  I’m sure you have heard all of those hopes, have even said them…and many more.

Those hopeful comments express the day-to-day feeling of desire for a certain thing to happen, a wishful thinking.  The hope that is sung about in this old hymn is based on a trust in something or someone.  Defined by one Biblical source it is an ‘expectation of, a looking forward to, something beneficial now and in the future’.  Another source uses the words ‘confidence, to anticipate, welcome, an expectation of what is sure, certain’, to describe this kind of hope.

Now faith is the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed)
of the things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see
and the conviction of their reality
[faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses].
Hebrews 11:1 AMP

…So that by two unchangeable things,
in which it is impossible for God to lie,
we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement
to hold fast to the hope set before us.
Hebrews 6:19

As a child, I remember ‘belting out’ the words to this chorus, “On Christ the solid rock I stand; All other ground is sinking sand.”  I love the words of this old hymn, because they are true.  The hope I have is built on Christ, The Rock, His blood and His righteousness.  That is all I ever want to trust in. All other hope is “sinking sand.”  People, as caring and well-meaning as they can be, are not enough to secure my standing before God.  In the “high and stormy gale” there is no anchor that holds me like Jesus.

For it says in Scripture:

“Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a cornerstone chosen and precious,
and whoever believes in Him will not be put to shame.”
So the honor is for you who believe…
1 Peter 2:6-7

For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid,
which is Jesus Christ.
1 Corinthians 3:11

Here are just a few Scriptures of assurance that God is our Hope, our Refuge, our Strength in life:

On God my salvation and my glory rest;
The rock of my strength, my refuge is in God.
Psalm 62:7 NASB

He only is my Rock and my Salvation, my Fortress; I shall not be shaken.
Psalm 62:6 ESV

You are my hiding place; You preserve me from trouble;
You surround me with songs of deliverance.
Psalm 32:7 NASB

The LORD is my Light and my Salvation; whom shall I fear?
The LORD is the Stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
Psalm 27:1 ESV

God is our Refuge and Strength, a very present Help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear…
Psalm 46:1-2 ESV

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say to the LORD, “My Refuge and my Fortress,
my God, in whom I trust.”
Psalm 91:1-2 ESV

Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God;
I will strengthen you, I will help you,
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10 ESV

I encourage you to meditate on this parable from Jesus:

Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.  The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.  But everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand.  The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.

Matthew 7:24-27

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Who or what is your rock, your refuge?  Do you live in hope, in confidence, and in certainty of Jesus Christ as your sure foundation?  My prayer is that you can ‘belt out’ this song with me:

My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness
On Christ the solid rock I stand
All other ground is sinking sand
IT IS SO!

I Will Not Fear

Though the fig tree does not bud
and there is no fruit on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
and no cattle in the stalls,
Yet I will triumph in Yahweh;
I will rejoice in the God of my salvation!
Yahweh my Lord is my strength;
He makes my feet like those of a deer
and enables me to walk on mountain heights!
Habakkuk 3:17-19

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I am claiming this verse today…and I am placing my needs before His feet. Fig trees and olive crops are symbols for the things of this world that we may lack at this very moment.  August is always hard here.  School is looming and there are always needs: clothes, shoes, school supplies (and now with one in college), the list goes on…and on. But isn’t God so much bigger than any of these?  {yes!}

It’s funny how God leads me to certain verses on the days that i write…and it always is something that I need to hear and to pass along to you.  What are you believing God for today?  Are you struggling to believe at all?  Sometimes things feel so desperate (and, truly, they may be).  There may be no food in the pantry and no money to go purchase any.  Or a really big bill is due and you have absolutely no idea how you are going to pay it.  Or an illness and a bad report has you feeling like there is no hope at all.

But the good news is this: There is always hope in Jesus!

I know that my sound cliche but it is so true! If you put all your hope and all your efforts into just praising Him today—though the problems may still be there—there will be joy in place of sorrow!  Hope will replace hopelessness and praise will replace pity.  We may not get to choose the circumstances in our lives but we can choose how we react to them.  (I am preaching to myself!)

Fear and worry are stealers, and they come straight from the enemy who wants nothing more than to rob you of all you have.  He especially wants to take your hope away.  But if we let him have that…we have let him win.  The enemy doesn’t go after your salvation.  He can’t have it!  But he can take the peace that comes with the salvation that Jesus gave His own life for us to have.  One of my favorite passages is Psalms 23.  It was one of the first ones that I learned in elementary school and it is one that has gotten me through a lot of hard times.  In verse 4 is says:

Even when I walk through the darkest valley,
I will not be afraid, for You are close beside me.
Your rod and Your staff protect and comfort me.

Today, as you read this verse, fill in the blank with your own valley.

Even when I walk through ________,
I will not be afraid, for You are close beside me. 

And know beyond a shadow of a doubt that whatever it is you wrote down, that your God is able to do this and so much more.  Claim it with me today…and enjoy the sunshine today!

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Let us pray: Dear God, You are so full of love for us and Your grace is sufficient for every minute that we breathe.  You are the same always; You never change.  Thank You for Your provision and Your hand in everything that we go through.  You waste nothing, oh Lord!  I pray today for all these friends reading this today, that You would give them back their joy and peace, oh God!  And that nothing that the enemy throws at them can take away the hope that they have in You.  Silence his lies today and everyday.  Remind them that feelings are feelings but that Your Word is truth.  Lead them to the truth today. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Hope (A Profession)

SeekingHimLogo
So let us seize and hold fast and retain without wavering
the hope we cherish and confess and our acknowledgment of it,
for He who promised is reliable (sure) and faithful to His Word.

Hebrew 10:23 AMP

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In the KJV the same verse says,

Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering
(for He is faithful that promised).

What are we seeing here?  Hope is the profession of our faith.  What is  ‘profession’ then?  In biblical terms, this is a calling.  It is ‘an occupation, practice, or vocation requiring mastery of a complex set of knowledge and skills through formal education and/or practical…’.

So if we take the AMP version that we should hold fast…without wavering…the hope, we are saying we should take the profession of our faith without wavering.

In a business world setting, if you know that you are an accountant, anything concerning administration does not concern you because there is nothing you can do about it.  You are not trained for that and you do not have knowledge concerning it. This is also true with the profession of our faith…we are called in this field of hope in which we are being trained to hope in the Lord, we are being equipped to undertake this profession without wavering.

We are called to this profession ourselves because God already knows that we need training.  The training is the faith which needs to be exercised on a daily basis.

Faith comes by hearing and hearing the word of God…
Romans 10:17

Once you hear  the Word of God, hope in the Lord moves from one level of glory to the other.   Faith and hope are inseparable professions that we as believers need to know and must have.  We need to combine these professions if we want to live a successful life.  A life of abundance only comes when we take our certificates in the profession which are desire, prayers, and belief.  (“What things soever you desire, when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you shall have them” Mark 11: 24).

For God to act on anything we need to have hope and faith in God.  Don’t doubt God.  Brethren I have never seen the righteous forsaken therefore let us hold fast our profession in God for He never fails.  Those marriages we are hoping for will come…finances needed…babies we desire…. All these will only come when we exercise our profession (HOPE).

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Father, I thank You for the wonderful time we had in Your Presence.  Thank You for the Scripture we have read;  we pray and believe that grace shall abound in us that we shall do our profession without wavering.  Grant us that grace, Lord, for we need it to exercise our inheritance in Your Kingdom.  For without faith we cannot please You!   We need it time and time again.  In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Nothing Is Wasted

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

The hurt that broke your heart and left you trembling in the dark
Feeling lost and alone will tell you hope’s a lie
But what if every tear you cry will seed the ground where joy will grow

Nothing is wasted, nothing is wasted in the hands of our Redeemer nothing is wasted

It’s from the deepest wounds that beauty finds a place to bloom
And you will see before the end that every broken piece is
Gathered in the heart of Jesus and what’s lost will be found again

When hope is more than you can bear
And it’s too hard to believe it could be true
And your strength fails you halfway there
You can lean on me and I’ll believe for you
Give it time…you will believe it too

That nothing is wasted nothing is wasted
Sometimes we are waiting in sorrow we have tasted
But joy will replace it nothing is wasted
In the hands of our Redeemer nothing is wasted

From the ruins, from the ashes—beauty will rise
From the wreckage, from the darkness—glory will shine

Jason Gray ~ singer/songwriter

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As we hold onto our brokenness, that is all that can be seen—by ourselves or anyone else.  But as we intentionally choose day-by-day (ok, sometimes it is moment by moment) to let a tiny bit of joy shine in…or to reach out with Jesus’ love to someone who hurts more than we do…than His glory will shine through us.  And, as it does, our hearts will brighten just a teeny-tiny bit.  And we will be encouraged ‘cause nothing is ever wasted when it is done with the love of God.

I so appreciate what Jason Gray shares in this videoclip before he begins to minister these beautiful words.  He says, “I believe…help my unbelief.”  Friend, ‘cause nothing ever is wasted as we seek and rely on and trust the One Who is always there to help us!  So when ‘hope is more than you can bear’ (at that moment) and when it does seem ‘too hard to believe it could be true’ and when ‘your strength fails you’ even though you are trying, call out to your Father…He is listening!

Hear me, Lord, and answer me, for I am poor and needy.
Guard my life, for I am faithful to You; save Your servant who trusts in You.
You are my God; have mercy on me, Lord, for I call to You all day long.
Bring joy to Your servant, Lord, for I put my trust in You.
Psalms 86:1-4

You, my dear friend, are not the first to have gone through these hard, hard things.  Though at times it does feel that way, draw strength from the examples of others who chose, like you, to call upon God.  And believe these Truths—God’s Word is truth.

But as for me, I shall sing of Your strength;
Yes, I shall joyfully sing of Your lovingkindness in the morning,
For You have been my stronghold and a refuge in the day of my distress.
O my strength, I will sing praises to You;
For God is my stronghold, the God who shows me lovingkindness.
Psalms 59:16 and 17

And my mouth offers praises with joyful lips.
When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches,
For You have been my help, And in the shadow of Your wings I sing for joy.
My soul clings to You; Your right hand upholds me.
Psalms 63:5-8

Cling, my friend, to every shred of hope, every drop of  precious light, every tiny bit of joy you can find.  I would love to share with you one of my very favorite passages in the Scriptures.  Truly these two verses have helped me to hold on and cling and believe many, many times!

[What, what would have become of me] had I not believed
that I would see the Lord’s goodness in the land of the living!
Wait and hope for and expect the Lord;
be brave and of good courage and let your heart be stout and enduring.
Yes, wait for and  hope for and expect the Lord.
Psalms 27:13 and 14

And trust in the One-Who-loves-you-so that you will see before the end that every broken piece is gathered in the heart of Jesus and what’s lost will be found again.  He loves you, my friend!  And nothing ever could or will separate you from His love.  (He has promised!)