Living Hope, Unspeakable Joy (Nov 22)

From Open Up Your Heart by Jeff Syverson

November 22

Living Hope, Unspeakable Joy

Today’s Scripture Readings: Psalm 127:1-5 | Ezekiel 44:1-45:12 | 1 Pet 1:1-12 | Proverbs 28:8-10

Today’s Scripture Focus: 1 Peter 1:1-12

“He has given us new birth into a living hope through the Resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead” (1 Peter 1:3 NIV).

Peter’s readers were going through difficult times. In the midst of all that they were going through they held on to a living hope. 

They knew that Christ had been raised from the dead. Hopelessness had turned to hope in the most impossible way. They knew they had an eternal hope and had every reason to find hope even in their present circumstances knowing that God had not deserted them. He was at work bringing good even of their tough times.

They also knew they had an inheritance “that can never perish, spoil or fade–kept in heaven for you.” This life is only the beginning of the life that is eternal. They will be rewarded for their faithfulness. It will be worth it all.

They also had the hope that God was using their present difficulties to refine their faith and prove it genuine. “These have come so that your faith of greater worth that gold, which perishes even though refined by fire–may be proved genuine and may result in praise glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.”

They had the hope of Christ’s return– a day they longed for–the anticipation of which brought inexpressible and glorious joy.

They had hope because they had an eternal perspective. Looking only to their circumstances might bring only hopelessness, but looking to God and his eternal purposes they found joy and the hope that enabled them to press forward in faith.

Keep your eyes on the goal and press forward in hope. Look to Jesus. He will be with you each step of the way.

Lord, help me to focus on the living hope I have in you. I am tempted to get bogged down in the tough stuff of this life, but so need to keep it all in eternal perspective. Remind me that these light and momentary afflictions are not worth being compared to the glory that will one day be revealed. Amen.

About pastorjeffsneighborhood

Born and raised in Minnesota, I have served in churches in Minnesota, Ohio, Oregon and California. I am a graduate of Crown College (MN) and George Fox Evangelical Seminary (OR). I have also done additional graduate studies in New Testament Studies at the Center for Advanced Theological Studies at Fuller Theological Seminary (CA). I am also a graduate of the College of Prayer. Having served as the Academic Dean and Program Director at Horizon Institute of Los Angeles for several years, I have returned to the pastorate and serve as Pastor of Big Trees Community Bible Church in Arnold, CA.
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