Monday, July 18, 2011

The Craz(z)ies, Part 2- Hope

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Key thought- “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11 (NLT)

HOPE- The Greek word for "hope" is elpo meaning "to look forward to with pleasurable confidence and expectation."
HOPELESSNESS- it means- having no expectation of good or success : to despair

WHAT CAUSES US TO HOPE LESS?
“Hope deferred makes the heart sick…” Proverbs 13:12 When the answer to our prayers seems distant, it can cause us to feel these three things:
Disoriented. “Where then is my hope? Who can see any hope for me?” Job 17:13
Drifting. “We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way.” Isaiah 53:6
Despair. “We had great burdens there that were beyond our own strength. We even gave up hope of living..” 2 Corinthians 1:8

Are you a prisoner of your past, of your circumstance or of hope?
“If you will be a prisoner of hope, God will restore back to you double everything that was stolen.” Zechariah 9:12

3 CHOICES YOU NEED TO MAKE TO BE A PRISONER OF HOPE

1. You need to choose to follow the God of hope.
"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13 (see also Psalm 62:5,Isaiah 40:31, Psalm 42:11)

2. You need to choose a perspective that looks to God's promises, not to your circumstance.
Elisha helped his young servant see things from God's persective! Read- 2 Kings 6
"Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see." Hebrews 11:1 (see also Romans 4:18, Psalm 119:81)

3. You need to choose certainty in the midst of uncertainty.
"Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego delared in the midst of their trial that they would put their hope & faith in God no matter what! Read Daniel 3
“Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:21-23 (see also Romans 5:2-5, Romans 8:28)

Hope is believing that it can happen. Faith is believing that it will happen. Faith based on hope stays strong no matter what happens! Receive hope, then take a step of faith!