Expectant Hope

I get so excited over new plants blooming.  When I wake up in the morning, one of the first things I look for- Is it blooming yet?  I love watching the tiny buds get bigger and bigger and lift up above the leaves, and then watch them start to open- a little color peeks at you, and then a little more each day.

It struck me this morning- it is so hard for me to hope for heaven like that.  To anticipate with joy being with God forever. I spent some time this morning looking at verses that talk about hope or mention hope.  This verse really struck me.

Romans 15:4-6: Paul is talking in chapter 14 about being sensitive to the convictions of others and not causing a brother or sister in Christ to stumble.  We should please others first before ourselves- and then this verse appears.

4For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.

 5 May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, 6 so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

That really speaks to me today.  In my determination to spend time in God’s Word each day- knowing I need it- and the time I am investing to help my children memorize Scripture- I memorize with them- knowing that we need to hide God’s Word in our hearts-hope in the Lord.

It is also teaching us endurance- as we see those who have suffered before us and have claimed the hope of Christ- who have been persecuted and tortured, even killed for their faith in Christ-hope in the Lord.

I found myself praying today, Lord give me that hope- I want to learn from your Word through the Holy Spirit- I want to run with endurance- and be encouraged today- that I might press on to hope.

I came across this verse today as well- an old favorite.  Some verses feel like the blanket I used to snuggle as a baby and young child.  We are inseparable- and these words, like that blanket (although definitely surpassing it in years)- have been a source of comfort.

Isaiah 40:31
31 but those who hope in the LORD
   will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
   they will run and not grow weary,
   they will walk and not be faint.

I want to hope expectantly- and keep the promise of heaven close.  How?  I don’t know, I am still learning- but I think a great place to start is to think about it.

Each day, just take some time to think about heaven.  To remember that this life is not the end.

Maybe read some books about heaven.  I love using Bible Gateway  to look up a word or passage to meditate on.  Look up hope and read some of the verses or passages.

I pray that the hope of heaven would touch you today, and give you strength in your current struggles.

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