My kids live in a permanent state of hope. They all have summer birthdays, so they quite happily spend half the year looking forward to Christmas and the other half of the year planning their birthday parties and presents! They start the beginning of the week, as they head out to school, talking about what they’ll do on the following weekend, and they go to bed each night telling each other what they’ll do when they get home from school
As a child it’s easy to have that kind of perspective. But as we get older we often get less like that. There’s so much to think about just today that the hopes we have for the future are often squashed by the reality of where we’re at here and now.
In the book of Romans Paul says ‘Even when there was no reason for hope, Abraham kept hoping — believing that he would become the father of many nations. For God had said to him, “That’s how many descendants you will have!”’ (Romans 4:18).
I admire Abraham and the other amazing men of God in the Bible, but if I compare their faith to the little wavering faith I have, with the struggles in my life, I can easily feel like giving up. Until I read the verse further along in Romans Chapter 4. This verse spurs me on: – ‘He was fully convinced that God is able to do whatever he promises’ (Romans 4:21). The reason it spurs me on and pulls me out of feeling that I could never match up to Abraham, (so why bother trying), is because it reminds me that it is isn’t so much about how much faith I can muster, but about knowing the faithfulness of God. It isn’t about how amazing Abraham was but rather how trustworthy He knew God to be.
When I take my eyes off my faith, and start to look afresh at the One who holds my life – faith fills my heart. My motivation to know Him and to trust Him grows. When I lay aside my understanding and my control, hope is re-ignited. Not because I’m amazing - not actually anything about me at all - but only because He’s truly steadfast and able to do anything in our lives.
Today I encourage you to look at the situations in your life with a fresh hope and motivation in your heart - a hope that’s rooted in the fact that God is able to do immeasurably more than you can ever imagine or even hope for - a motivation coming from the fact that He never changes and is the same God in the Bible that Abraham knew and that we can know. I encourage you not to limit your hopes to the world’s wisdom, or its diagnosis and prognosis on your live and future, – after all those who speak over our lives may mean well, but our lives aren’t held in their hands.
Our lives are held in the hands of almighty, all-powerful God! So we can be motivated to keep hoping and keep trusting and keep believing – not relying on our own strength but simply resting in the knowledge that He is able.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, Sometimes I’ve looked at my own faith and found it so lacking that I’ve limited You. Today I remember it isn’t so much about my faith as about Your faithfulness. I can learn to trust You more as I find You trustworthy, and I can allow hope and motivation to ignite in my heart, as I remember You’re forever faithful. Lord, I long to know You more intimately so that I too, like Abraham, can be fully convinced that You’re able – not just in my life but in the lives of those around me. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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