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Topic: Hope

fear

From Fear to Peace: Three Truths to Fight Fear

I sat in my car as monsoon rains poured down on our little island in the East China Sea, while my husband was on the other side of the world, preaching at his mother’s funeral. A few years prior, ALS (also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease) set in, ravaging her […]

pain

Pain Will Not Have the Final Word

Pain has taken its toll on me—physically, emotionally, and mentally. The damage isn’t always visible on my face or in my words, but it’s always there, tempting me to view everything through the lens of an aching heart and a weary spirit. No one lives this life untouched. We all […]

Key Connections

Key Connections (March 16, 2018)

Amy Carmichael’s Secret to Fighting Discouragement (Eliza Thomas, International Mission Board) Much attention is given in Christian circles to the critical role Scripture and fellowship play in sustaining ministry, and Amy affirmed the importance of both those things. But it’s her deep and abiding appreciation for beauty that enlivens her work […]

hope

How to Rejoice in Hope When Life is Hard

Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. (Romans 12:12) In any walk of life, there will be times of great blessing and times of great difficulty. There will be times when you feel full of joy, and there will be times when you feel quite desperate. […]

ascension

The Good News of the Ascension of Jesus

“Do not cling to me.” This can’t be the reception Mary Magdalene was expecting when she encountered the resurrected Jesus. Mary had been weeping outside Jesus’ tomb. You can imagine her distress, having just watched her dear friend suffer a humiliating, grisly death. Now his body was missing. Jesus walked […]

reign

The Reign of the King: Lean on This Promise

King David said to God, “I will build a house for you.” But God said to David, “No, I will build a house for you” (2 Samuel 7:11). God was not referring, of course, to a building of bricks and mortar, but to a dynasty, a line of descent that […]

Disappointment

God Is Working Through Your Disappointment

Now the donkeys belonging to Saul’s father Kish were lost. (1 Samuel 9:3) No one likes to lose their donkeys. In fact, people don’t enjoy losing anything. Loss is frustrating. And Kish said to his son Saul, “Take one of the servants with you and go and look for the […]

resisted gospel

Hope for Loved Ones Who Have Resisted the Gospel

Anxiety over loved ones who have resisted the gospel and rebelled against the Lord is one of the heaviest burdens we carry in our mature years. When I ask members of our congregation how I can best pray for them, the request I hear most often involves sorrow over a […]

Infertile

Four Truths for the Infertile Married Couple

As Christians experiencing the pain and heartache of infertility, my husband and I have come to see Sarah and Abraham as dear friends. We would love to chat with them over a cup of coffee; we wonder what our conversations would be like if we asked them about their experiences. […]

Expect

Four Things You Can Always Expect from God

We have a way of shaping our expectations. But this way, the responsibility is on us, and we can become unsettled, even angry, if our expectations fail to become reality. My 7-year-old grandson is famous for this. Recently, when my husband had our deck taken apart for repairs, Oliver was […]

Single

An Open Letter to My Single Friend

Dear Elisabeth, I ask for your forgiveness. I have not been a good disciple, nor a good friend to you in the ways I press and groan and guess about possible times and dates for when the Lord will bring us husbands. Talking too much about “if” and “when” and […]

Hope

Is Hope Perched In Your Soul?

Which Old Testament character had the most to say about hope? Job. Surprised? Me too – at first. But the more I study Job’s story, the more I realize that hope enabled Job’s faith to soar above adversity. American poet Emily Dickinson described hope this way: Hope is the thing […]

God promises

Do You Expect More Than God Promises?

We sat in amazement, shocked by the unexpected blessing the Lord provided for our family right before Christmas. After going into this season with the hard reality of no income and the heavy weight of trials, we had accepted the fact that this Christmas would contain few gifts and activities, […]

sermon clip

Where Grieving People Can Find Hope Today

Video Notes: What in the world could a person call to mind – when their soul has no peace, when they have forgotten what happiness is, when their endurance has perished, and their hope is gone – that would make it possible to say, “This I call to mind and […]

expect less

Hope More, Expect Less

What do you expect in the near future? In Chicago, we can expect winter to be cold, snowy and long, but we can also expect a warm summer and a beautiful fall. (Spring is non-existent.) I expect to attend two family weddings this summer, which I expect will be great fun, […]

sermon clip

Change Always Begins with Hope

Video Notes: “Whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” (John 4:14) Notice where Jesus begins this conversation: There are great thirsts in […]

live in this world

Do You Have What It Takes to Live in This World?

Here’s the question: Do you have what it takes to live in this world? Do you have a hope in which you can rejoice? Do you have a patience with which you can endure? Do you know the help of God on whom you can call? Because all of this […]

hope in Christ

The Two Sides of Hope in Christ

I was talking with a young girl who is facing what could be the most difficult trial of her life. She expressed her biggest fear is that it will never come to an end, that she won’t get through it. In that moment, I wanted to be able to promise […]

Kinds of Hope

Could There Be Two Different Kinds of Hope?

“We have run out of options. Your ankle will continue to get worse and you may eventually be unable to walk on it. In order to prolong your use of it, you must avoid all running, jumping, and stress on your leg…to the best of your ability, even avoid gaining […]

Rock of Ages

Learning to Kiss the Wave, Trusting the Rock of Ages

I walked into a room filled with nearly 300 women, hungry, eager, craving to connect to each other and learn from God’s Word. I couldn’t believe my eyes – it was my greatest fantasy come true! We started off by going around the table and introducing ourselves. One by one, […]

feeling gray

When You’re Feeling Gray

The skies are gray today. Snow flurries blur the landscape outside the window. Temperatures hover in the mid-teens. The cold creeps through the soles of my shoes and my wool socks — the price I pay for working at my desk, which sits on the floor above our house’s crawl […]

all things new

Three Ways God Makes All Things New

New is great. New sounds like potential and opportunity…unless I think about it too much. Then it sounds like change and the unknown. As this new year begins, I’ve promised myself that instead of fearing the unknown I will choose to hope in the known. So what is known about […]

empty chair

The Empty Chair at the Table

This weekend was tragic for my community. If you’re a parent of a middle school child in my area, you are holding your kids just a little bit tighter and whispering “I love you” just a little more frequently. Late last Friday afternoon, my phone buzzed, indicating that I had […]

Unforgivable Sin

Bible Q&A: Have I Committed the Unforgivable Sin?

Question: Hello. I am 19. I have been struggling the past few months with terror of hell and God and hopelessness that I cannot know the Lord. I have seen my sins and realized how holy God is and how offensive I have been towards Him by living in sin. I […]

You Cannot Know the Meaning of Christmas Unless You Grasp This

On October 7, 2010, USA Today published an article entitled “How America Sees God.” This was based on the findings of two sociologists from Baylor University in Texas. The survey said that 28% of Americans see God as “engaged in history and meting out punishment to those who do not […]

Five Reasons You Should Have Hope

When anxiety or fear or discouragement or confusion abounds, the silent monologue within our hearts boils down to this one question: “What reason do I have for hope right now?” This is why Psalm 130 is so striking. The title says it all: My Soul Waits for the Lord. In […]

blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord

Hope in the Drought

Rough and harsh; dry and arid. Such is the season of the drought. And drought comes to everyone. We will all endure difficult “heat of life” circumstances. These are indeterminate of who we are or where we’re planted. We get flat tires. Our computers break. We struggle with the effects of aging. We […]

if God is for us who can be against us?

What Being “In Christ” Means

Here is a great reality that stands at the center of the Christian life. Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who was born in the manger, died on the cross, and rose from the dead, lives by his Spirit in the soul of every Christian believer. We call this being “in Christ.” If […]

patience waiting on God

Three Ways to Grow While You Wait

Waiting is not wasted time. Often, though, it seems to be! I am waiting for the train. I am waiting for my appointment. I am waiting in a long queue. Sound familiar? Waiting can seem futile, so we look for something to do while we are waiting. This is why […]

What the Bible Story Is Like

The Bible story is like a necklace in which many pearls are joined together on a string. Just as a necklace falls and rises, the Bible story shows us the magnificent sweep of God’s plan for history. The story begins at a high point in the Garden of Eden, where […]

Finding Forgiveness and Hope After an Abortion | Video

Pastor Colin Smith talks about what it will be like for mothers or fathers who made the choice to end the life of an unborn child, and have come to regret the choice they made.  He answers the question “Does God forgive abortion?” and provides hope for those who have […]