“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 ESV
Here is a quote from my newsletter article one year ago this month:
“Welcome to 2020 friends!!! The future of House of Faith has never looked clearer and brighter!!! We are so excited to begin this year and the feeling of excitement and joy and anticipation has NEVER BEEN GREATER!”
(…pause…) Oh my, how we had no idea how the world would change!
In light of that statement, it is tempting to look back on 2020 and think of how it could not have been more wrong. As is the case with the whole world, we could never have known what kinds of changes and issues we would soon walk into, and “the new normal” that would arrive for us all.
I love the hope and enthusiasm that is reflected in my statement from the beginning of last year. Anticipation, excitement, joy – “NEVER BEEN GREATER,” I said. Again, it is tempting to point this out as being incorrect.
But a closer look, even in the midst of all the terrible details, reveals something different entirely.
The verse from Romans 15:13 at the beginning of this article is in the future tense, where Paul is giving this blessing as something that The Lord WILL DO; and yet, as I look back on 2020, I see that this is the very thing that The Lord HAS DONE.
Yes, there has been so much difficulty and struggle and sickness and death and chaos and violence and anger and.. and… and… Yet, in the midst of it all, He has been there all along the way with us, and, as we begin the year, we now do so with Hope Overflowing.
He has Sustained us. Empowered us. Enabled us. Provided for us. Protected us. Led us. Comforted us. Used us. Emptied us. Partnered with us. Given us hope.
In fact, looking ahead toward 2021, I find myself with an even GREATER of sense clarity and excitement and joy and anticipation, more so even than this time last year. In fact, again… it has NEVER BEEN GREATER! Why would I say such a thing?
People are angry. Children are hurting, Youth are confused. Families are scared. And, in the midst of it all, and by the power of the Holy Spirit, we are finding more and more opportunities to Take JESUS to neighborhood Children, Youth, and Families.
As I read Romans 15 it seems to me to be all about TRUST. Hope overflowing comes by the power of the Holy Spirit through the filling with joy and peace by the God of Hope AS WE TRUST IN HIM.
That is our prayer for all of you this year. That you find your trust in Him and receive Hope Overflowing. The Lord really is a God of hope and it is our prayer that He fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that this year, you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit within you!
Please know that we are so very grateful for your faithful support, for TRUSTING WITH US, especially this past year. We are still here and we are still out there Taking JESUS to neighborhood Children, Youth, and Families.
Blessings of The Lord surround you during this new year!