the God of hope

This verse greeted me this morning as I turned to January 23rd on my current perpetual-page-a-day calendar …

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 (NIV)

Seems like every time I take another look at today’s verse I see something anew.

For example, the phrase ‘as you trust IN Him’ tends to jump off the page at me because whenever I see the words ‘trust IN God’, you are basically talking about faith … of course faith is a noun and trust is a verb.  IMHO the verb … the action verb … for faith is believe.  Rarely does the word believe in the Bible mean simply ‘mental assent or agreement’ like we’ve come to accept today … more typically believe really means ‘living out your faith’‘practicing what you preach’ with confidence and assurance IN Jesus and His power, plan and purpose.

Seems like other translations like the NASB and ESV tend to see it that way as well …

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.

The other thing I see here is that the God I love is not a stingy God … He fills us … often to overflowing.

What was it David wrote in Psalm 23?

“Thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.”  Psalm 23:5b (KJV)

So as you trust IN Him, may the God of hope give you a portion of joy and peace … no, that’s not right.

So as you trust IN Him, may the God of hope FILL you with ALL joy and peace.

FILL … make full, become full, obtain something that is wanted or needed, fill to satisfaction, plug with substance …

ALL … as much as possible …

Yes indeed, Lord … FILL me with ALL Your joy and peace!

Ok, then reading this verse prompts me to pose questions the verse subsequently answers …

So how does God do this?

And what is a subsequent result of being filled with all peace and joy?

Answer to the first question … by the power of the Holy Spirit!

What did Jesus tell His disciples just before His ascension?

You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you.  Acts 1:8a (ESV)

Second question … second answer … you may overflow with hope … you may abound in hope.

Hope is the confidence that all God has promised will be fulfilled … nothing less … nothing more.  The hope given by God via the Holy Spirit is God-centered not me-centered.

May you and I overflow with and abound in the hope that believes confidently in Romans 8:27-28 …

And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.  And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. (ESV)

It’s a hope that trust that ALL things … both things perceived as good and bad … work together for good … for the cumulative good and fulfillment of God’s will and purpose.

Yes Lord, according to Your will … according to Your purpose.

Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.  Matthew 6:10 (ESV)

And what was that verse on my calendar again?

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 (NIV)

Wonder what tomorrow’s page will prompt …

Bernie

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About bwebbjr

A grandfather, father, husband, man, and a child of God who is following Christ Jesus and working out his salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work IN me, both to will and to work for His good pleasure (Philippians 2:12-13). I dodged my first bullet with cancer when a cancerous polyp was removed in a sigmoid colectomy surgery in August 2007. Four years later, in the midst of a second colectomy surgery we discovered I had Stage IV metastatic colon cancer. Rather than colectomy surgery I had colostomy surgery, which now means the colostomy bag is a part of my everyday life ... with the emphasis on life. God has given us a peace beyond understanding as my wife and I have traveled this journey. By the grace of God I am blessed to be a 6 plus year cancer survivor aka warrior. In writing, I am often wrestling with my own personal struggles and beliefs and in the midst God leads me to a lesson He wants me to learn ... or sometimes He simply touches me in the revelation of Himself. My hope is that the result you see here might touch your heart and glorify God. And let me be clear ... I am not the only one with something to say. Please join in the conversation sharing your faith, your cancer experiences, etc. I would love to hear from you. Bernie
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