The Gift of Hope

Written by: Steve Crowder

From his youth, Steve knew he was called into the ministry which ultimately led him to Applied Life Christian College in Arkansas. Now as Lead Pastor of Highway, after two decades of ministry experience, marriage and raising three kids, Steve teaches with unique insight and practical application.

November 28, 2023

Romans 15:13 NIV “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

Over Thanksgiving, our family practiced the time-honored tradition of breaking out the decorations, blasting Christmas music, decking the halls as they say and watching the beloved movie, Elf together. My wife, Missy, as always, outdoes her creative self by turning our home into a Hallmark movie set. It’s one of the favorite things I love about the holiday season. I’m proud to say that I contributed to this year’s festivities by adding some new National Lampoon Christmas Vacation acrylic moose head eggnog cups to the kitchen decor! And it’s nearly impossible to not say, “It’s good, It’s good” each time I drink from them as Chevy Chase did in his movie scene of frustration. As I have typically done in the past, I had already bought Missy a present at some point through the year and had it wrapped and under the tree before she even noticed it was there. And thus far, it’s the only one sitting there until it’s joined by others once the holiday gift shopping really gets underway. One present wrapped with love sitting under our tree.

This got me thinking… if there was one gift that we could open this Christmas, what should it be? I think we could all use more HOPE.

I mean, how often has a wave of hopelessness washed over you this year? Thoughts about the cost of living, challenges at work, your future, family, or broken relationships each of which can lead us to this overwhelming feeling of hopelessness. But that’s just it, hopelessness is only a feeling, it’s not a fact. It’s the absence of hope, and by definition, hope is a feeling that what is wanted cannot be had or that events will not turn out for the best. And based on this scripture that the Apostle Paul wrote in the book of Romans, the ‘God of hope’ wants to fill our lives in such a way that hope is actually spilling over due to our inability to contain it all. You get some hope, and you get some hope! Yeah, I think I need that level of God sized HOPE in my life this season! How about you?

King David wrote in one of his psalms to all the saints, “Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart, all you who hope in the Lord.” (Psalm 31:24)  Hope is an anchor that God wants your soul secured with, and I believe that He wants us to receive it as a gift this season. He’s wrapped it with love, and if there is one thing I know to be true: He gives good gifts to His kids. God’s will for each of you today is that your life would overflow with hope. 

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