What Does the Bible Say About Hope?

Hi Beloved, Happy Sunday! I hope that you all had a blessed week. Let’s continue this series by reading what the Bible says about Hope.

We’ve all struggled in some area of our lives. We’ve been through trials and dark times. Many of us are going through a difficult season right now. It can be so tough to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Sometimes, we struggle for so long, we just think “this is life…it never gets any better”. But things can get better, they will get better! No matter what difficulties you are facing. Circumstances are only temporary, but the promises of God are eternal. They will come to pass! In Matthew 7:7, Jesus says, “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.” If you’ve prayed and nothing happened, pray again, and again, and again. Even if it’s not immediate, the Lord will answer your prayers and deliver you!

HOPE – The Lord says that we will have trials and tribulations in this world, but we can have hope because He has overcome the world. He has plans to prosper us and will work all things together for the good of those who love Him.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)

“There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off.” (Proverbs 23:18)

“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.” (Romans 15:13)

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” (Romans 12:12)

“I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, 19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe.” (Ephesians 1:18-19)

“Let’s hold on to the confession of our hope without wavering, because the one who made the promises is reliable.” (Hebrews 10:23)

“I sought the LORD, and He answered me; He delivered me from all my fears.” (Psalm 34:4)

“Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, and whose hope is the LORD.” (Jeremiah 17:7)

“Oh, I must find rest in God only, because my hope comes from him! Only God is my rock and my salvation — my stronghold! — I will not be shaken.” (Psalm 62:5–6)

“Our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father loved us and through grace gave us eternal comfort and a good hope. May he encourage your hearts and give you strength in every good thing you do or say.” (2 Thessalonians 2:16–17)

“O Israel, hope in the Lord; for with the Lord there is unfailing love. His redemption overflows.” (Psalm 130:7)

“But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” (Lamentations 3:21-23)

“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)

“He has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you.” (1 Peter 1:3-4)

“The Lord your God is with you, a Powerful One Who wins the battle. He will have much joy over you. With His love He will give you new life. He will have joy over you with loud singing.” (Zephaniah 3:17)

Beloved, I hope that you are blessed and encouraged by God’s word. You are deeply loved and highly favored.

Jesus Loves You,

Alexis

Boldly Defeat Your Giants

“This is the Lord’s battle, and he will give you to us!” (1 Samuel 17: 47)

Hi Beloved! I hope you are having a blessed week! We are in the thick of winter and over here we are cold and covered in snow. I have to say, I used to loathe cold weather, but now I actually enjoy it! I don’t know when or how that change occurred, but since I live where it gets quite cold, I’ll take it!

Today, I wanted to write about one of my absolute favorite Bible stories! You might know it well. It is such an incredible story and provides us with such a great example of how to boldly defeat our own giants. You may already know where I’m going with this, it’s the story of David and Goliath! Let’s look at the entire fight scene in 1 Samuel 17.

“He picked up five smooth stones from a stream and put them into his shepherd’s bag. Then, armed only with his shepherd’s staff and sling, he started across the valley to fight the Philistine. Goliath walked out toward David with his shield bearer ahead of him, sneering in contempt at this ruddy-faced boy. “Am I a dog,” he roared at David, “that you come at me with a stick?” And he cursed David by the names of his gods. “Come over here, and I’ll give your flesh to the birds and wild animals!” Goliath yelled. David replied to the Philistine, “You come to me with sword, spear, and javelin, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies—the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. 

Today the Lord will conquer you, and I will kill you and cut off your head. And then I will give the dead bodies of your men to the birds and wild animals, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel! And everyone assembled here will know that the Lord rescues his people, but not with sword and spear. This is the Lord’s battle, and he will give you to us!”As Goliath moved closer to attack, David quickly ran out to meet him. 

Reaching into his shepherd’s bag and taking out a stone, he hurled it with his sling and hit the Philistine in the forehead. The stone sank in, and Goliath stumbled and fell face down on the ground. So David triumphed over the Philistine with only a sling and a stone, for he had no sword. Then David ran over and pulled Goliath’s sword from its sheath. David used it to kill him and cut off his head.” (1 Samuel 17: 40-51).

Whoa! Every time I read this story, I get so fired up and filled with faith! I just love how God uses the weak to confound the mighty. Goliath was a tall, strong, and mighty warrior. He was protected by thick armor and had a shield bearer with him. David on the other hand, was a young teen boy, with a bag of stones, sling, and a staff.

Don’t you just love David’s faith? The Bible says, once Goliath moved in to attack, David quickly ran out to meet him. He was bold because he knew the battle was the Lord’s and that no matter how big this giant was, he would be victorious.

Today, we don’t face physical giants, but we might face giant health issues, financial issues, and relationship issues. Let’s have faith so great that we have no fear and we boldly run toward our giants armed with the name of the Lord and His promises.

Even when our giants come out yelling and boasting, when they are big, mighty, and covered in armor, even when we’ve seen others fall by their sword, remember that the battle is the Lord’s and you will triumph!

One of my favorite verses in this story is when David tells Goliath that the Lord will conquer him and then all the world will know that there is a God in Israel. Our victories will be a testimony to others that the Lord rescues His people. I pray that we will so bodly face and overcome any attack of the enemy that people will hear about the strength and power of our God and want to know more. We can be a remarkable example to the world in these times of ever-increasing giants.

Beloved, if you are facing a giant that seems impossible to defeat, meditate on this story, meditate on God’s word. The Lord is with you as He was with David. He is still protecting His people! If you want me to pray with you or for you, please reach out! May you be bold and empowered in the coming weeks. May the Lord bless you and keep you and your families! Amen!

Jesus Loves You,

Alexis

Love Your Neighbor as Yourself

“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law? Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. There are no greater commandments than these.'” (Matthew 22:36-40)

Hi Beloved! I hope you had a blessed Thanksgiving. Now here we go, full steam ahead toward Christmas! During this busy time of year, let’s remember the true reason for the season. I know I get so caught up in Christmas preparations that I hardly take time to reflect on the birth of our precious Savior, but this year, I’m committed to making a conscious effort. And as the year comes to a close, I just want to share a message that has been on my heart.

We can probably all agree that 2020 has been a year of tremendous change. As Christians, we sometimes wonder how to respond to political, social, or economic upheaval. This year, we’ve been confronted with many serious issues and the solutions are not always clear. Disagreements and opposing opinions abound. Whether it’s regarding the pandemic, politics, or other current issues, it’s sometimes difficult to have a civilized conversation with someone that has a different opinion because everyone is so passionate about their position. It can be hard to understand why some people think or feel the way they do and we won’t all agree or understand each other at times. Nevertheless, the Lord wants us to remember His two greatest commandments. Above all, love Him and love others. Our response as followers of Christ should be love.

I want to focus on the second commandment, to love your neighbor as yourself, as that is typically the most difficult of the two. In Matthew 22:36-40, (see above) there are no stipulations. He didn’t say, love your neighbor as yourself, if they agree with you politically. Or love your neighbor as yourself, if they have the same beliefs, hobbies, or interests. Just love your neighbor as yourself. That doesn’t mean we have to love their ideas, words, or actions, but we should love the people.

Now, let’s look at what the bible says about how to love others. Romans 12:10 says, “Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.” Ephesians 4:32 says, “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” Philippians 2:3 says, “Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 says, “Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”

Though it’s easier said than done, what would the world be like if we all put those principles into practice? Can you imagine? What an amazing place it would be! It may seem far-fetched, but we can do our part. Though we can’t control others, we can control our own actions and honor God by keeping His commandments. It won’t be perfect, we will stumble and make mistakes, but let’s pray for His perfect love to abound in our hearts. “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love” (1 John 4:7).

Beloved, as you reflect on the events of 2020 and look ahead to next year, be encouraged and filled with hope, even in these times of uncertainty. Let’s love and care for each other and remember that the Lord is our constant. Love Him and trust Him. He is still on the throne and He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Amen!

Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Jesus Loves You,

Alexis