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Suggested Reading ...

As requested by a number of you, herewith a few books that I strongly recommend.

The Case for the Psalms:Why they are Essential - N.T.Wright

Journey to the Common Good - Walter Brueggemann

Gagging Jesus: Things Jesus said we wish he hadn't - Phil Moore

Worship Matters: Leading Others to Encounter the Greatness of God - Bob Kauflin

The Writings of the New Testament : An Interpretation - Luke Timothy Johnson

These titles I have been able to source through Loot.co.za- happy reading!

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Confident Hope. PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by Grant Nuss   
Sunday, 26 February 2017 15:13

Romans 5:3 - 4; “And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.”

“While we were trying everything we could before we got to the end of our rope, we were dreading the day we would reach it. But God was excitedly anticipating it. He stands ready to be the strength in our weakness, the wealth in our poverty, the health in our sickness, the deliverance out of our captivity, and the comfort in our despair. From beginning to end, He is our hope” (Chris Tiegreen). You and I pray for people hoping that God would move in their particular situation. I have been praying in hope for a wonderful lady who has a life-threatening disease to be healed for a few months now. We know and have experienced God healing an ailment and removing a disease, but sometimes He doesn’t. Still, we continue to pray without ceasing. One thing that does happen in our tribulations though, is that our faith gets stronger through it. Likewise, our hope grows in hard times and difficulties, not when life is easy and trouble-free. By way of illustration it’s similar to how the body-builders out there build muscle. How? By breaking it down. Then, as you keep working at it the muscle gets stronger. Sounds a lot like the teachings of Paul, doesn’t it? That our strength is developed through our weakness, no different to followers of Christ in their spiritual lives. John Maxwell writes that; “Hope shines brightest when the hour is darkest. Hope motivates when discouragement comes. Hope energizes when the body is tired. Hope sweetens while bitterness bites. Hope sings when all melodies are gone. Hope believes when evidence is eliminated. Hope listens for answers when no one is talking. Hope climbs over obstacles when no one is helping. Hope endures hardship when no one is caring. Hope smiles confidently when no one is laughing. Hope reaches for answers when no one is asking. Hope presses toward victory when no one is encouraging. Hope dares to give when no one is sharing. Hope brings the victory when no one is winning.” Finally, let’s close with Romans 15:13 where Paul writes; “I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.” So may you determine to see life through lenses of hope knowing that, even when the odds seem all against you, God is in control, we know who we are in Him, and, also, what He intends for us.

 

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