Staying Hopeful

Day 10

Day 10, our last day in “Staying Hopeful” gives us a secret to our hope: pondering…

Devotional Point 4 today: It’s so important that we remember where we have come from…

Scripture 4 today: “How amazing are the deeds of the Lord! All who delight in him should ponder them.” ‭‭Psalms‬ ‭111:2‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Reflection 4 today: sometimes we have such a strong focus on today and what we should be doing with/for God today that we fail to remember all the incredible things He has done for us. Clearly he specified several Holy Days along the way, so clearly He wants us to take the time to celebrate them, and as a part of celebrating there is the remembrance and reflection of the amazing things God has done. starts with the gratitude journal and goes on from there…

Question for the day: what are you doing today to remember God’s great blessing to you?

Other Notes: it has been interesting looking at all the aspects of Staying Hopeful for the last 10 days. Tomorrow we will move on to a fairly new series from our friend Craig Groeschel called “Ever Wonder Why”. it is a 7 delay series and will start tomorrow. Invites out today, and Happy Thanksgiving to all our American colleagues…

Day 9

Day 9 of this series cuts to one of the most important issues for us as believers in Christ: His newness and mercy never change and are new every day!!!

Devotional Point 4 today: His gracious mercy never changes.

Scripture 4 today: “This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!”  ‭‭2 Corinthians‬ ‭5:17‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Reflection 4 today: his grace and mercy never changes for those who don’t know Him and those who do. Salvation has been viewed during the last 65 years of the “Broadcast Cycle” of the church as an event that buys you admission into a club, for which you then have to go it on your own, usually “white knuckled”… This “in Christ” means new in Christ every day. New thoughts, new views, new behaviours, all new… Every single thing new…

 

Question for the day: what is He doing new in your life today?

Day 8

 

Day 8 brings us to one of the most important things God wants to give us: perspective…

Devotional Point 4 today: Be refreshed in His love and grace, and then share it with a world that so desperately needs it.

Scripture 4 today: “Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you.” ‭‭Deuteronomy‬ ‭31:8‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Reflection 4 today: After 40 years of wandering around the desert, they are planning to cross the Jordan and take the land God promised. But on the way to do that, the first thing this tribe comes on is 2 small but mighty kingdoms east of the Jordan called Sihon and Og. Small, but much better warriors than the Israelites. They could have been wiped out right there, but God totally won the battle for them. How often does “what happens on the way” knock us off our game? God’s plan for us to day is to stay focused on the battles He has for us today…

Question for the day: what knocks you off your game?

Day 7

Day 7 digs at the problems of the failure of most of us to see real opportunity, it might be too hard…

Devotional Point 4 today: it was always about what God could and would do if His people would only hope and believe in Him to do it!

Scripture 4 today: “But Caleb tried to quiet the people as they stood before Moses. “Let’s go at once to take the land,” he said. “We can certainly conquer it!” ‭‭Numbers‬ ‭13:30‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Reflection 4 today: We are daily faced with very large and incredible opportunities disguised as unsolvable problems. However, that is the way it has been for many years. And we also know that a faith that has not been tested is not a real faith at all. It is just fine to say that you have faith, but you need to understand that faith will be tested against very big giants in very large walled cities with very big locks on the doors. So what are you choosing to be part of today, the terrified 10 or the terrific trusting-in-God 2?

Day 6

Day 6 gives us some very important direction for what to do when we are round down and torn down…

Devotional Point 4 today: He will renew your strength and refresh your spirit

Scripture 4 today: “Instead of shame and dishonor, you will enjoy a double share of honor. You will possess a double portion of prosperity in your land, and everlasting joy will be yours.” ‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭61:7‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Reflection 4 today: everyone gets tired, everyone gets rundown. But that is really not the issue for our God. Throughout the history of Israel they got tired, they got rundown, and then they engaged in deep rebellion and sin. God he had a covenant with them, so he didn’t just reach down and wipe him out. He sent them into exile into Babylon. Obviously, it was a terrible situation, but God had made the commitment that he would rescue them in so he did. No matter what we do wrong God is always there to bring us back to the “centre“.

Question for the day: where do you need strength to be renewed today?

Day 5

Day 5 points us to the greatest of mysteries of the Christian faith, the fact that we trust totally in something we do not actually see…

Devotional Point 4 today: in Christ you’ve already won

Scripture 4 today: “You love him even though you have never seen him. Though you do not see him now, you trust him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy.” ‭‭1 Peter‬ ‭1:8‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Reflection 4 today: for the most part, our theology of living is dominated by our five senses. The really important point here is that the foundation of our faith is well outside of that which we could know through our five senses. The reason why we have “already won“ is that first and foremost the payment has been made on the cross for our sin and then secondarily we have the full deposit of the Holy Spirit inside us making that faith work every single day.

Question for the day: what s your plan for developing that faith in what we can’t see?

Day 4

Day 4 delivers to us the source of all the purpose that we have in this life, our ability to drink from the living water, water that will never leave us thirsty…

Devotional Point 4 today:

…God is the source of our purpose in this life…

Scripture 4 today:

“But those who drink the water I give will never be thirsty again. It becomes a fresh, bubbling spring within them, giving them eternal life.” ‭‭John‬ ‭4:14‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Reflection 4 today:

It is really easy to read the story about Jesus and the woman at the well he and Miss one of the most important points. The backdrop of the story is a well, one that was dug many hundreds of years before. It facilitates the discussion on the concept of thirst and water. Water is obviously pretty important, we can’t live more than a day or two without it. However what Jesus is talking about is a spring of living water, not a well of water that was dug by someone at some previous point in time. Real conversion delivers real springs of living water…

Question for the day: when we get off track, how is the best way to get back for a drink of the living water? Fairly simple, stop trying to stop it flowing out of you

Day 3

Day 3 of Staying Hopeful delivers one of the most important keys to us: He wants to come in, He wants to heal you and your family, He wants a life with you…

Devotional Point 4 today:

“I want to come in. I want to give you hope.”

Scripture 4 today:

“He came to his own people, and even they rejected him.” ‭‭John‬ ‭1:11‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Reflection 4 today:

It is a fairly simple deduction that He wants to come in to us… However, there is way more behind it that I realised. Based on his precise actions, there is no way the Jews could have rejected Him, but they did as they have done for thousands of years. The miracles were important to the Israeli Jewish population, but not so for the Gentiles, for them it actually proved very little. What meant something for them was the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, and the transformation that occurs through that. All that transformation comes through engagement…

Question for the day: What do you need to do to let him further into your life today? it is all about the engagement with Him.

Day 2

Day 2 addresses the results of hope in the Lord, “renew their strength”…

Devotional Point 4 today:

…because hope is fuel and passion fuels hope…

Scripture 4 today:

“but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” ‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭40:31‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Reflection 4 today:

Waiting is what faith does before God’s answer shows up. God gives us great and precious promises, and then he calls us to wait. And Isaiah’s point is that such bright expectancy is the psychological leverage God uses to empower us. We humans do not do waiting naturally or normally and we have become progressively worse at it as time passes. So, we need to break out of the world’s method of waiting and break into God’s…

Question for the day: How do you develop your hope in the Lord? Waiting for nothing has never been natural to me, learning to be better at it every day…

Day 1

Day 1 of our new devotional series “Staying Hopeful”, it is all about the journey…

Devotional Point 4 today:

…He can move mountains

Scripture 4 today:

“Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” ‭‭Matthew‬ ‭19:26‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Reflection 4 today:

Breaking the cycle of conspicuous consumption is impossible for man, because conspicuous consumption says I will have what I want when I want it and where I want it. This creates a cyclone of activity that develops its own vortex and ultimately makes us slaves to something that we never intended for. This relationship with Jesus is not just one way to fulfilment both here on earth and in heaven, it is the only way that we can be hopeful in all circumstances every day. It is the every day bit that is what the world will see in us…

Question for the day: What is God doing in your life that is basically impossible? He has changed my life and focus to Him, and away from the cycle of conspicuous consumption…

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