Thursday, February 27, 2014

The Confidence Of Hope And Great Expectations

Right from the beginning of 2014, I knew without an iota of doubt that the year is going to be eventful in many ways. As I noted in my first post this year, it is a year marked with significant events in our nuclear and extended family. It is a year in which we are confident that we will see the manifestation of God’s supernatural grace, and many celebrations of growth, promotion, completion and expansion. Things have been rapidly unfolding over the past eight weeks of 2014 to indicate that we have not even seen the tip of the iceberg, in terms of what God has in stock for us this year.

Indeed, I entered the year with mind-boggling expectations. This page is insufficient to enumerate the magnitude of the things I am trusting God for this year. These words have been constant in my mind, “Prepare the ditches, for you shall neither see the rain nor hear the wind, yet the valley shall the filled with water” (2Kings 3:16-17).

I participated in the All-Night Prayer meeting held in my church at the end of January. It was the first time I was able to do so after many years. I left that meeting elated, high in the spirit and so full of confidence in the ability of God to bring to pass every promise and prophetic word, He has given us for this year. An inexplicable peace enveloped me and my heart was at rest. Honestly, I am overwhelmed at the amazing things I see God set in motion on our behalf during this month, the awesome ways in which He is performing His wonders in our lives.

There is nothing like having hope fanned to flame. Hope that refuses to waver or stagger at the enormity of the promise in the face of contrary circumstances.

“I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living” (Ps 27:13) – this is an example of kind of confident hope and great expectation I am trying to describe. David would have fainted and despaired if he did not have this confidence of hope. Such was the confidence that he had in God that he rejoiced in the prospect of waiting for the Lord. He was confident that inspite of the contrary evidences, he would remain alive to see God’s goodness and blessing.

There are many examples in the Bible of how David strengthened himself in the Lord in times of calamities and troubles. He knew the God he served. He knew God’s ability to deliver in times of trouble. And because of the depth of his knowledge of God, he could remain confident in hope.

There is a vital connection between faith and hope. Our faith must be anchored on knowing Who God is and Who He says He is. This becomes the basis for the confidence of our hope in God. Hope anticipates the reality of what God is saying, and the fulfillment of His promises, when we are in agreement with His word by faith. Hope is the proof of the faith we have in God. Hope disappears when our faith wanes because of we do not rightly understand who God is and what God is able to do.

God is a hope worth clinging to. In fact, there is nothing else worth clinging to in the time of storms and trials, or at any time for that matter, than God. I put my hope in God because I have an expectation that He will do what He says He will do. Therefore, my faith is based on the revelation of who God says He is according to His Word and the foundation for the confidence of my hope is firmly rooted in my knowledge of God.

Faith gives life to hope and hope strengthens our faith - Greg Simas

I am so persuaded that this is a year of the manifestation of God’s supernatural and exceptional miracles in our lives as individuals and as a family. I am confident that it is a year in which we will also do great exploits for God and for the Kingdom. I am not being presumptuous, my confidence is based on the God’s word and His promises.

There is surely a future hope for us according to the Word of God, and our expectation shall not be cut off (Proverb 23:18). This is because our expectation is driven and motivated by faith in God. Faith that is grounded on the revelation of who we know God is and on the ability of God.

As children of God, we have every right in Christ Jesus to expect a great tomorrow and a bright future even if our current situation is in conflict with that expectation. God’s thoughts towards us are thoughts of good. His plan is to give us a hope, a future and an expected end (Jeremiah 11:11).

There will be times when it will be difficult for us to wrap our minds around the magnitude of the things we are believing God for based on His unfailing promises and the Word He has given us. It can be so astonishing that like Mary, we will say, “how can this be?”

The woman with the issue of blood had an expectation driven by faith. She came from behind and pushed towards Jesus. She had just one expectation, just one hope: “if I touch the hem of His garment, I will be made whole” (Matthew 9: 20-21). Her faith was grounded on her knowledge of Jesus based on what she heard about Him. That knowledge supporting her faith, fuelled her expectation and made her confident in hope. There was no doubt that this woman was confident of what would happen when she gets to touch Jesus. The confidence of her hope gave her the impetus to push against the crowd all the way from the back until she got close enough to touch Jesus.

When our expectation is driven by faith, it is guaranteed to produce the right results which in turn helps our faith to grow and achieve its goal. A confident and relentless hope is the evidence of such faith.

“Our faith is based upon what the word of God reveals to us about Who God is, what He has done before and what He has promised to do now and in the future.”

Our hope must be founded on the truths presented to us in the Word of God. We can have such a great expectation even when our current circumstances makes our optimism unrealistic. Our great expectation is intricately woven to the depth of our knowledge of God, which propels our faith and trust in God. And it must be grounded in the unfailing love of God revealed in Jesus Christ and sealed in our hearts by the Holy Spirit (Romans 5:5). It is by the grace of God and because of His love for us that we have been given this eternal encouragement and good hope (2Thess 2:16).

Against all evidence to the contrary, Abraham, didn't simply hope. 
He believed in hope." - Christa Allan. 

Dear Friends, we too can learn to believe that against all hope, God can best display His glory and power in our lives. Hope makes us relentless in the pursuit of our dreams, desires and goals. It makes us relentless in the pursuit of God and in knowing more of Him.

We have an ever-living hope
A hope of which we can boast
A hope that does not disappoint
A hope that does not make us ashamed
A hope that is anchored on the infallibility of God
On His unfailing faithfulness.

It is this confidence of hope that informs my great expectations. And this is what I commend to you today. You are blessed beyond measures.

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