ROMANS 15:13: “Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” NKJV
OBSERVATION: Am I abounding in hope? Is my life marked by joy and peace? Is my faith always looking forward, with anticipation, to the outpouring of the grace and mercy of God upon my life?
Faith is different than hope. Faith has to do with the “now” of life. Hope has to do with the “future.” The writer of Hebrews writes,
- “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. For by it the elders obtained a good testimony. By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.” Hebrews 11:1-3 NKJV
Faith brings the anticipation of hope to life. Yet, without hope faith quickly becomes a diminishing flame in our life. We need faith to be able to hope, and we need hope to continue in faith. The Scriptures do not call us to a hope that we create. Rather, it calls us to abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. How do we do this?
First, we must understand the source of all hope.
- “Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing…”
Our hope is not anchored to what we would like to happen. Our hope is anchored to the God who has promised us what will happen. Hope is powerful because the source of hope is God Himself. He is the God of hope. This means that He is always at work to establish His good purposes in our lives.
- “You are good, and do good; Teach me Your statutes.” Psalms 119:68 NKJV
God is good and he does good. His purposes for our life are always good. He is always at work to redeem, heal, and restore us. His promise is life, abundant life, everlasting life. No matter what we are facing in life, our God, who is good, is working on our behalf to bring all things together for our good! This is the source of our hope.
As we walk in faith, anchored in hope, our lives are filled with His joy and peace. As Jesus looked beyond the cross toward the joy that was set before Him, so we look beyond the immediate struggle with a sure hope that is anchored in God’s nature, promises, and love. We can look back at all the times He has been faithful in our lives. And, we can see how He is working in our present, as we look ahead in hope toward all that He will continue to do!
- “Yes, we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead, who delivered us from so great a death, and does deliver us; in whom we trust that He will still deliver us…”. II Corinthians 1:9-10 NKJV
As the world is tossed and turned with turmoil and chaos, the believer is able to abound in hope. As the news continues to proclaim all that is broken and lacking, the believer walks in joy and peace as he walks in faith. Yet, this joy, peace, and hope are not for our comfort alone. We have a living hope that we are called to share! As the world grows darker, the souls of men and women will desperately hunger for hope. And, we have the only hope that can fill this desperate need.
There is only one hope for the world. It is to be reconciled to the God of hope through Jesus Christ our Lord. We must be abounding in this hope in both word and deed. Our lives need to be beacons of hope in this time of hopelessness and unrest. As we allow our light to shine, as we abound in hope through the Holy Spirit, as our lives are marked by His joy and peace – people will ask us why we are so different. We must always be ready to give a defense, an explanation, and an invitation to the hope we have in Jesus Christ!
- “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear;”. I Peter 3:15 NKJV
- “Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” II Corinthians 5:20-21 NKJV
Lord, help me to abound in hope today! Help me to walk in Your joy and peace by grace through faith. Let my light shine, and give me the opportunity to share Your hope with others.
In Jesus Name!