Archive for the ‘hope’ Category

Three Ways to Get Tenacious in Hope

Friday, February 15th, 2019

Be strong and let your heart take courage, all you who hope in the Lord. Psalm 31:24

1. REMEMBER YOU WERE RESCUED. The Bible describes the pre-salvation position as “having no hope and without God in the world” (Ephesians 2:12). But the emptiness of a fallen world has forever changed because of Jesus. He left the splendor of heaven and came on a rescue mission for us. He died to forgive our sins and heal our diseases (1 Peter 2:24).

2. KNOW GOD’S WORD. Biblical hope is based on the integrity of God’s faithfulness – His character, performance, and nature – and differs greatly from the baseless optimism that the world calls hope. Hope in God springs from knowing His well-documented track record in the Scriptures (Romans 15:4). The faithful God in the Bible is the same God who will help you in your situation.

Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13

3. CARRY HOPE TO THE WORLD. God wants to use us to offset the incredible negativity and pessimism in the world. Hope is something that gets in our vocabulary when everybody else is complaining, that rises up even when circumstances go the opposite way, and that adjusts our thinking to remember God’s faithfulness. You can be confident that God will cause all things to work together for good and as you stay steady in hope, you will see the goodness of God in this life (Romans 8:28; Psalm 27:13-14).

Press on,
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

DAILY CONFESSION:
I take courage and hope in the Lord. I fix my hope on the living God, who is the savior of all. I hope because Jesus took my sins on the cross and by His wounds I am healed. He strengthens my heart, and I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living (1 Timothy 4:10; 1 Peter 2:24; Psalm 31:24; Psalm 27:13-14).

te·na·cious, adj.
Characterized by extreme persistence; relentless or enduring. Holding fast; characterized by keeping a firm hold.

Copyright © 2019 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. “tenacious.” American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 4th edition. Web. 12 Feb 2019 . “tenacious.” Random House Unabridged Dictionary. Web. 12 Feb 2019 .

Three Steps to Renew Your Hope

Friday, February 8th, 2019

“For I know the plans that I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11

1. TRUST GOD’S PROMISES. The prophet Jeremiah wrote these words almost 500 years before Jesus came to earth; yet we still have a right to this promise of hope. The same God who declared a future and a hope to an exiled people is our God today. He never changes (Hebrews 13:8). And because Jesus died for the sins of all humanity, we have a new covenant “inaugurated under better promises” (Hebrews 8:6). How much more are we now called to hope.

2. COMMIT TO GOD’S PRIORITIES. It is our responsibility to keep our hopes alive. Start your day with devotion to Jesus. Just as we follow through on commitments even when we don’t feel like it – going to work, taking care of our kids, etc. – we must set Jesus as a priority day in and day out. Read a Proverb a day, find a good devotional, read some Psalms, read a chapter of the New Testament. When we continually remind ourselves what God’s Word says, then we become equipped, encouraged, and established in truth (2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:12-13).

Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13

3. RELY ON GOD’S PERSPECTIVE. Hope and faith do not deny reality. They are the product of trust in God’s faithfulness. Faith-filled believers understand that more is going on than what they can see. As Christians, we are called to have faith and hope that God is creating a masterpiece, even if we can’t yet see how it all ties together. So keep praying, keep loving others, don’t cave into negative bias, stay in the Word – and watch God use you as a voice of hope in the world.

Press on!
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

PRAY THIS PRAYER:
I love You, Jesus. Today I renew my devotion to You. You are Lord and I give You first place in my life. Help me to be ready to give an account for the hope that is in me to anyone who asks. And help me to do it with gentleness and respect (1 Peter 3:15). Amen!

prom·ise, noun
A declaration that one will do or refrain from doing something specified. Reason to expect something. To pledge to do, bring about, or provide (verb).

Copyright © 2019 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. “hope.” Merriam-Webster.com. Merriam-Webster, n.d. 08 January 2019.

Breakthrough in Hope

Friday, January 25th, 2019

Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13

1. KNOW YOUR HOPE. Our beliefs fuel our destiny. Sometimes discouragement can settle in when we feel that life isn’t what it’s supposed to be. But when you shift your focus to Jesus and what He has done, you can get back to biblical hope. We fix our hope on the living God.

2. GROW IN HOPE. The one-two punch for building our hope is praying and spending time in the Word. It’s how we get refueled with confidence and courage to keep on moving forward with Jesus.

But in your hearts set Christ apart [as holy — acknowledging Him, giving Him first place in your lives] as Lord. Always be ready to give a [logical] defense to anyone who asks you to account for the hope and confident assurance [elicited by faith] that is within you, yet [do it] with gentleness and respect. 1 Peter 3:15 AMP

3. SHOW YOUR HOPE. There are not enough voices speaking encouragement and hope in the world. But God has called us to be carriers of hope and to “consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds” (Hebrews 10:24). We keep Jesus first in our hearts so that when we are asked why we have hope, we are ready to answer.

4. GO IN HOPE. Abraham believed God’s promise that he would become the father of many nations, even though he and his wife were way past child-bearing years. Yet he continued in hope, trusting God to fulfill His promise (Romans 4:17-19). We too can have a confident expectation of impending good, knowing that God’s Word is true and what was meant for harm, He will turn around for good (Genesis 50:20).

Press on!
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

DAILY CONFESSION:
May the God of hope fill me with all joy and peace in believing so that I will abound in HOPE by the power of the Holy Spirit. I pray that the eyes of my heart may be enlightened so that I will know what is the HOPE of God’s calling (Romans 15:13, Ephesians 1:18).

Hope, verb
Biblical Greek word for hope: elpis
To anticipate, usually with pleasure; expectation or confidence.

Copyright © 2019 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. Scripture taken from the Amplified Bible (AMP), Copyright © 2015 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, CA 90631. All rights reserved. “elpis.“ Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible. Copyright 1890 by James Strong, Madison, NJ.

Abounding in Hope

Friday, January 18th, 2019

Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13

1. REDEMPTIVE HOPE. When something we are hoping for is delayed, our hearts can get discouraged (Proverbs 13:12). But even then, “the Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit” (Psalm 34:18). We base our hope not on the shifting sands of man but on the eternal Word of God. And we know that what He promises, He will do.

For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. Romans 15:4

2. BIBLICAL HOPE. “Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs it down, but a good word makes it glad” (Proverbs 12:25). Jesus cares about the smallest detail in our lives. There is help for us when our hearts grow cold and our vision for the future becomes blurred. If you’re running low on hope, go to God’s Word to equip, encourage, anchor, and gladden your soul.

Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord. Acts 3:19

3. RENEWED HOPE. God wants our hearts to reconnect with expectation. Those of us who have been stuck in depression or have given into our flesh realize how great it is to be forgiven. The Bible is filled with examples of imperfect people and challenging circumstances, and God helped them and renewed their hope. Open your heart to God today and let His eternal hope fill you with anticipation for what He has ahead!

Press on!
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

DAILY CONFESSION:
This is a year of breakthrough for me. I hope in the Lord, and my heart is strengthened and takes courage. When I pray, I obtain. I walk by the Spirit and do not carry out the desires of the flesh. I grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus and I am filled with the knowledge of God’s will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding (Psalm 31:24; Mark 11:24; Galatians 5:16; 2 Peter 3:18; Colossians 1:9).

a·bound, verb
To exist or occur in abundance; be plentiful. To be plentifully supplied (with); teem (with).

Copyright © 2019 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. “abound.” Collins English Dictionary. Web. 16 Jan 2019 .

Hope for the New Year

Friday, January 11th, 2019

For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. Romans 15:4

1. ANCHORING TRUTH. Hearing the Word produces the ability to face the future with hope. What does the Bible say? Its anchoring thoughts are why we keep going back to the amazing stories of the Old and New Testaments. It builds in us an unshakeable confidence in God so that we can face off with the world’s challenges.

We who have taken refuge would have strong encouragement to take hold of the hope set before us. This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast. Hebrews 6:18b-19a

2. ENVIRONMENT OF HOPE. The Bible tells us to “consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds” (Hebrews 10:24). Look for ways to help people get out of the harsh dilemma of hopelessness – not by being flattering or offering hollow optimism, but by being encouraging according to the anchoring truth of God’s Word and making Jesus known.

Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13

3. STRONG IN FAITH. If faith is the substance of things hoped for, then we should maintain biblical hope. Hope is an expectation of some good, and hearing the Word produces the ability to face the future with hope and faith. So take time this month to draw near to God and get your hope strengthened. 2019 is going to shine!

Press on with Jesus!
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

DAILY CONFESSION (Lamentations 3:21-24):
This I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope. The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, “Therefore I have hope in Him.”

hope, verb
To expect with confidence: trust. To desire with expectation of obtainment or fulfillment.

Copyright © 2019 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. “hope.” Merriam-Webster.com. Merriam-Webster, n.d. 08 January 2019.

Hope for the New Year

Friday, December 30th, 2016

For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. Romans 15:4

1. LAY DOWN YOUR BAGGAGE. Before David conquered Goliath, he first left his baggage in the care of the keeper (1 Samuel 17:22). As we prepare to enter into some breakthrough seasons, we need to lay down the weights and sins that hold us back and run with endurance the race that’s set before us. (Hebrews 12:1).

2. DON’T COPY OTHER PEOPLE’S METHODS. Saul tried to give David his armor, but David instead took five smooth stones and a sling to the battlefront (1 Samuel 17:38-39). We don’t need to complicate our own battles by using other people’s methodology. We don’t win by might or by power, but by the Spirit (Zechariah 4:6).

3. SLAY YOUR GIANT. Our faith in God is not baseless optimism but a biblical hope anchored in the Word of God. The giant you are facing might be an economic relapse, family issues, or anxiety about your future. Whatever it is, God has the right methods so that you can stand up to it in the Name of Jesus and command that giant to fall.

4. COURAGE IS CONTAGIOUS. Other people’s breakthroughs are attached to your obedience. When David killed Goliath, it paved the way for others to have the courage to stand up to their own giants. Years later David encountered another giant, but a different warrior rose up and killed him (2 Samuel 21:15-17). Fight and win your battle and then watch the repercussive effect.

Press On!
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

DAILY CONFESSION
I know the plans that God has for me—plans for welfare and not for calamity to give me a future and a hope (Jeremiah 29:11). This hope I have is an anchor for the soul, both sure and steadfast (Hebrews 6:19). And as for me, I will hope continually, and will praise You yet more and more! (Psalm 71:14).

Copyright © 2016 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.

The Greatness of Humility

Friday, July 24th, 2015

At that time the disciples came to Jesus and said, “Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” And He called a child to Himself and set him before them, and said, “Truly I say to you, unless you are converted and become like children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever then humbles himself as this child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 18:1-4

1. Who Is the Greatest? This question is posed in a setting where so many civilized empires had come and gone. The great sophistication of the Egyptian civilization had already been expressed. The power of the Roman Empire was expanding. Because of Alexander the Great, Greek culture had spread throughout the known world. But when asked about the greatest, the best, the highest, Jesus calls over a child and tells the disciples to become like children. Greatness and significance are found in the place of continually humbling yourself and cultivating a childlike spirit.

For You are my hope; O Lord God, You are my confidence from my youth. By You I have been sustained from my birth; You are He who took me from my mother’s womb; my praise is continually of You. Psalm 71:5-6

2. To Know Him Is to Love Him. A child who has good parents never wonders if they are going to follow through. God is the Father you can rely on completely. You can have a childlike hope and expectancy that God is going to completely take care of you.

Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord. Acts 3:19

3. Be Renewed Every Day. You can become childlike again. First, repent and surrender to Jesus. After that, there are daily opportunities to humble yourself and get your mind renewed. You can choose to go out into the world sour and harsh or to become refreshed. Get in the Word, spend time with Jesus, and trust Him for times of refreshing.

Pray This Prayer:
God, You are great and do wondrous things! You alone are God (Psalm 86:10). Restore to me the joy of Your salvation (Psalm 51:12). Help me to approach the future with childlike faith and expectancy knowing that You, God, are working all things out for my good (Romans 8:28). I love You, Jesus! Amen.

“Ah, but I was so much older then.
I’m younger than that now.” — Bob Dylan

God bless you,
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

Copyright © 2015 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.

The Thrill of Hope

Monday, December 22nd, 2014

Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. Hebrews 10:23

1. BECAUSE OF JESUS, YOU HAVE GREAT WORTH. So many people deal with feelings of worthlessness, but Jesus was willing to sacrifice to pay the price for your redemption. You are worth the Blood of Jesus; your life is worthwhile.

2. BECAUSE OF JESUS, YOU HAVE HELP. God has answers corresponding to all the problems you face. Not only are you a survivor, but you are more than a conqueror (Romans 8:37). The ridiculous challenges you are encountering now won’t even be worth comparing to the amazing breakthrough and testimony you will have on the other side of the battle.

For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison. 2 Corinthians 4:17

3. BECAUSE OF JESUS, YOU HAVE HOPE. You don’t have to lose heart. Jesus is the Light shining in the darkness and He also has shone in your life (2 Corinthians 4:6). The next time you watch the news or encounter dark circumstances in your own life, speak God’s Word over the situation. If you feel like you have a broken spirit, spend some time in praise and worship.

This Christmas, pray this prayer:
God, I trust You. I refuse to fall into the traps of worry and strife this holiday season. So now I take my eyes off the circumstances and people around me and instead look to You (2 Corinthians 4:18). I thank You that You provide all my needs according to Your riches in glory in Christ Jesus. This will be my best Christmas yet. I love You, Jesus!

            O Holy Night!
            The stars are brightly shining
            It is the night of the dear Savior’s birth!
            Long lay the world in sin and error pining
            Till He appeared and the soul felt its worth.
            A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices
            For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn!
            –Words by John Sullivan Dwight

Merry Christmas!
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

Copyright © 2014 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.

Hope

Monday, December 27th, 2010

Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13

God fills you with joy and peace. The Bible describes the pre-salvation position as “having no hope and without God in the world” (Ephesians 2:12). But the lost-ness of a fallen world has forever changed because Jesus who never sinned became sin for broken humanity (2 Corinthians 5:21). He left the splendor of heaven and came on a rescue mission for us. Joy to the world, the Savior has come!

He is the God of hope. Biblical hope is based on the integrity of God’s faithfulness—His character, performance, and nature—and differs greatly from the baseless optimism that the world calls hope. Hope in God springs from knowing His well-documented track record in the Scriptures and in people’s lives: “For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope” (Romans 15:4). The faithful God in the Bible is the same God who will help you in your situation. Even if you fall, God is there to lift you back up (Proverbs 24:16; Psalm 145:14).

Be strong and let your heart take courage, all you who hope in the Lord. Psalm 31:24

Be a carrier of hope. God wants to use you to offset the incredible negativity and pessimism in the world. Hope should be something you carry—something that gets in your vocabulary when everybody else is complaining, that flares up when all the circumstances go the opposite way, that adjusts your thinking to keep your dreams and hopes from getting dashed. Get tenacious! Be confident that God will cause all things to work together for good (Romans 8:28). You will see the goodness of God in this life (Psalm 27:13-14).

. . . We have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men . . . 1 Timothy 4:10

Merry Christmas!
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

Copyright © 2010 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.

Keep Hope Alive

Monday, January 25th, 2010

“For I know the plans that I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:11-13

Meditating on a verse like this will pull you out of regret for the past and dread of the future, and it’ll make you aware that the future God has planned for you is a future with hope. If you read the beginning of Jeremiah 29, you’ll see that Jeremiah is prophesying in order to get four things across to the exiled Israelites stuck in Babylon. He is telling them to build, multiply, ignore the false prophets, and keep hope alive.

This strong exhortation communicates that even though the Israelites had some grim circumstances, God always works for the well-being of His people. Paul reiterated this recurring theme of God’s faithfulness when he wrote as a captive in a Roman prison: “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice!” (Philippians 4:4). God is calling us to learn how to abase and abound (Philippians 4:12) and live as Kingdom people who are clear-headed, victorious, and full of love, independent of our circumstances.

But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn, that shines brighter and brighter until the full day. Proverbs 4:18

Don’t let anything other than the Bible define who God is in your world. The problems come when our meditation shifts from the Word (Psalm 1:1-3) and we listen to the bad report or to false prophets. Take Jeremiah 29:11 into your spirit and let it stir your heart with courage and dispel the dismal outlook that has tried to settle on you. Just like His plans for Israel, God’s plans for you are good plans. Keep building. Keep multiplying. Don’t listen to false prophets. Keep hope alive!

God has good things ahead,
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

Copyright © 2010 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.