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Leviticus 26, Ecclesiastes 9, Psalm 33, Titus 1

“No king is saved by the size of his army;
no warrior escapes by his great strength.
A horse is a vain hope for deliverance;
despite all its great strength it cannot save.
 But the eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him,
on those whose hope is in his unfailing love,
 to deliver them from death
and keep them alive in famine.

We wait in hope for the Lord;
he is our help and our shield.
In him our hearts rejoice,
for we trust in his holy name.
 May your unfailing love be with us, Lord,
even as we put our hope in you.”

Psalm 33:16-22, NIV

{bold print added by me}

This psalm was so timely. I needed the reminder to praise Him and of His incredible greatness, power, and sovereignty.

One thing that particularly stuck out to me, however, was the word “hope.” It’s been a theme here lately. No matter how much I fail and fall short, I have such a great hope within me.

Oh how I’ve come to appreciate that old hymn that starts out, “My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus blood and righteousness.”

Nothing less, indeed! I fail so constantly that there certainly is no putting hope in myself. The world around, well, I find the opposite of hope there. Insecurity seems to be heightening at an exponential rate.

But Jesus’ blood and righteousness? It is enough. More than enough. It is a done deal. It is a sure and solid hope. Not a wistful hope. It’s not a wish, but a gift that has been given to all who will receive.

And that is amazing. “Because He lives, I can face tomorrow!”

In a world of sickness, bombs exploding and fingers pointing, where I reel, weep and fall…

Lord, Help me ever receive this hope, breathe this hope that you have given. Thank you for wanting me to hope in Your unfailing love, not in the strength of myself or other people. Not in health or safety. I want those things, but I thank you that You have given me hope in this broken body and in this broken world, and that you never lie.

“…in hope of eternal life, which God, who never lies, promised before the ages began and at the proper time manifested in his word through the preaching with which I have been entrusted by the command of God our Savior;”

Titus 1:2-3



1 Comment

by | April 22, 2013 · 5:00 am

1 Chronicles 13,14; James 1; Amos 8; Luke 3

2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. (James 1:2-4)

OK, I admit it. I love and hate these verses. I look back over my 50 years and I get it, I really do. But that is not to say that I like it or think that if I were God for a day I would do it the same way. At least I don’t think I would, but I honestly don’t spend too much time pondering that.

I remember reading about an experiment that had to do with growing trees in an environment without wind and they grew tall and beautiful. But after the slightest puff of wind they fell down to the ground. Reminds me of the plant with the shallow roots that Jesus told us about that dies off quickly in times of drought. It is no surprise, then, I am most inspired by people that overcome great challenges and obstacles, not by those that seem to have everything handed to them on a silver platter. (Notice I say “seem to”, because I believe everyone has their trials, some are just more visible.)

These words bring me grief as well as hope. But if I meditate upon them it is hope that stands out the most. No matter what happens in this world my hope is secure. And not only will the trials I face be a vapor in the wind one day, but here on earth they build strength and perseverance. God doesn’t waste a single experience. Thank you, Lord, for that.


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by | November 19, 2011 · 8:46 am