Live with great expectation. Be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead.
That’s what the apostle Peter wrote — he who experienced all the highs and lows of walking with Jesus, recognizing he was with the Son of God, seeing miracles, walking on water and then, when the pressure was on, turning away and denying he even knew his Lord.
And Peter makes no bones about it — he says there will be trouble and trials. Life will not be without its hard times. But still, There is wonderful joy ahead.
Is his encouragement just some feel-good promise about a heaven we “hope” is somewhere out there in our future?
Or could it possibly be that there is still joy and hope to be found in all of our lives? Could there truly be great joy ahead when we’re surrounded by the degeneracy, greed, inequality, poverty, war, oppression, and evil in the world, and we are caught in our own battles with — well, whatever the battles and messes in your life are about …?
But these devotionals are not about the sick state of our world — or the messes in our individual lives. These meditations are, instead, about finding the hope that answers all those things.
It is not just hope for a far-off, other-world life. And it is not “hope” in the sense that we “wish” these things would happen.
This hope rests on sure, solid promises from a God who does not lie and always keeps His word.
This is real hope for today, yesterday, and tomorrow. It’s hope for every one of us, in all our impossibles, our questions, our restlessness, our imperfection — hope for our entire journey.
This is not a complex theological study. This is just a venue for me to share the encouragement and hope I’ve found in the Scriptures.
Endless, satisfying comfort and assurance is there, in the Word of God. If you want to drink more deeply of hope, study the additional Scriptures at the end of each week’s devotionals. And even that list is not complete. When you are looking and asking, you’ll find hope on every page of the Bible as you read.
I offer these devotionals as a help:
To answer the question. These pages are for all who have asked, What do Christians hope for? What hope is there in this world?
As a daily reminder. We too often forget our birthright as children of God. We are assaulted by many other voices and messages that tell us life is frail, faith is futile, and hope is faint. Listen, instead, to the voice of your Creator, whose plans and promises will never be thwarted. Take a few minutes each day to hear reassurance from the God of all hope and to give thanks to Him who holds your life in His hands.
For encouragement in tough times. If you are hanging on by your fingernails, hear the promises of God, even in the midst of the fire or flood now sweeping through your life. Use the additional Scriptures given at the end of each week to dig deeper, read His Word, and hear the voice of the One who loves you and holds you through it all.
For group study. The outline of additional Scriptures on each subject can also be used as a springboard for group study and discussion. We need to encourage each other to live firmly in these hopes. Feel free to print any or all of these posts.
And finally, please do …
Use the prayers: Each week’s devotionals include a prayer from the Psalms. One prayer for the whole week. Most of these were written by David, a man God described as being “a man after my own heart.” I’d encourage you to memorize the prayers. They’re short and simple, and wonderful to use as your own prayer when you need them.
The devotionals on finding hope begin here: https://livingaschildrenofgod.wordpress.com/2015/01/01/hold-tightly/
All Scriptures quoted in the text are from the New Living Translation unless otherwise noted.