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The Power of Hope

One of the definitions of 'hope' according to dictionary.com is "the feeling that what is wanted can be had or that events will turn out for the best." A simple concept in deed, but one that is sometimes difficult to practice in a dificult moment. Hope, this feeling that events will turn out for the best, is important. If there is one feeling we are permitted to indulge, it is the feeling of hope, even in the face of adverse circumstances.

The Scripture reminds us of the powerful effect of hope on our daily affairs. Here is how the Bible puts it: "And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us" (Romans 5: 5, NIV).

Hope does not disappoint. In some ways, what this means is that whatever we hope for within the atmosphere of God's love tends to come to pass. In another sense, it also means that we have nothing to lose by hoping for the best even if what we hoped for does not exactly happen as we had hoped. There is always something about hope and the process of hopeful expectancy that leaves us far better than when we first began.

But this hope is not merely positive thinking that is based on our ability to discipline ourselves. The kind of hope that does not disappoint is the kind of hope that is based on God's love. Hope does not disappoint BECAUSE of God's love poured into our heart.

Notice that it is such love that has been poured out INTO our hearts by the Holy Spirit. It's not a mental assent to love; rather it is the deep knowledge that you and I are loved by God in a truly personal and affectionate way. This is a personal awareness of divine love that is birthed through a personal walk with the Holy Spirit. May the Lord grant us a revelation of His love for us. May we all pray that we "being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God" (Ephesians 3:17-19,NIV).

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