Proverbs 23:18 ” There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off.”

To look forward with confident anticipation is the essence of all hope in us. We are ever bolstered by the joyful expectation that hope brings into our lives. As we move into the new year know that the Lord is watching over your future hope, it can never be destroyed by the enemy…your hope can never perish. The Lord knows and is fiercely guarding the desires of your heart. A future hope is forever yours…hold on to it.

Isaiah 43:18-19 ” Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.”

You will never move forward if you are tied to the past. The Lord tells us in this verse to forget the past and not dwell on it anymore. He says to you , See, I’m creating a brand new thing for you…take your eyes off the past so you can see it! And once you make that transition from dwelling on the past to looking forward to the future, you will finally see the wonderful new way the Lord has prepared for you.

John 11:25 ” Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.’ “

Lazarus was dead and buried four days when Jesus arrived on the outskirts of Bethany. When Martha heard He was coming, she went out to meet Him. Later, Martha told Mary, and Mary went out to meet Jesus also. Both sisters in their grief could have turned their backs on Jesus for not coming before their brother had died. Both Mary and Martha could have been angry and resentful, and refused to acknowledge Jesus at all… but instead, both ran to Him for comfort even if they couldn’t understand everything that was happening. In times of profound grief when there are so many unanswered questions…don’t turn your back on the Lord, instead, run to Him for comfort.

Ecclesiastes 1:9 ” What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.”

We humans think the same…whatever is happening in our lives is totally unique and has never happened to anyone else…ever! By thinking this way, we can self-isolate from fear, embarrassment, or shame of what others may say or do. Anxiety and dread may be alleviated by simply speaking up. Telling someone, seeking medical attention, or getting help will allow you to see that you are not alone, you’re not abnormal, and like Solomon wrote- there is nothing new under the sun- thus whatever is happening in your life has happened to thousands of people also… so Speak up!

Philippians 4:13 ” I can do everything through Him who gives me strength.”

The Lord enables us to endure, sustain and effectively handle any thing and/or situation we are thrust into. He will strengthen our feebleness and calm all fears. This scripture is a proclamation of what we are able to accomplish through Him.
YOU are able to do ALL THINGS by His power that lives in YOU and who gives YOU strength. Through Him there is nothing YOU can not do!

Hosea 10:12 ” Sow for yourselves righteousness, reap the fruit of unfailing love, and break up your unplowed ground; for it is time to seek the Lord, until He comes and showers righteousness on you.”

The snow is swirling, the roads barely driveable, it’s Winter here in Idaho. But the dark dreary days are broken up by hope in the form of seed catalogs! These brightly colored montages of flowers and vegetables transport me to Spring in the middle of all this snow. But I’m also realistic enough to know that it may be months before we can even till the garden. As with this scripture, we should do what we can says it is time to seek the Lord until He comes. The time is right, the season is now, to seek Him…ever hopefull of Spring … and Him.

Acts 13: 32-33 ” We tell you the good news: What God promised our fathers He has fulfilled for us, their children, by raising up Jesus…”

I declare to you the Good News this Christmas morning! The promises of God have come into existence in the form of that tiny baby in the manger. Now take these glad tidings and proclaim the good news of Jesus to others around you today. From our house to yours…have a very Blessed and peaceful Christmas!

Isaiah 9:6 ” For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on His shoulders. And He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

Today ponder this…For unto You a tiny baby was born, for unto You a firstborn son was given. If there had been no one else in the world, God would have done this miracle just for You. God loved you so much that He gave His only Son to die on that cross in Your place. Isaiah proclaimed the coming of the Messiah…for You.

Luke 2:8 ” And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.”

Why would God want the angelic messenger to deliver the greatest news ever known to mankind to a group of shepherds? They were simple people, living out in the fields with their animals…caring for, protecting, and tending ill and injured sheep. The Lord could have chosen any other people group to herald this awesome news, but He chose them. Jesus called Himself the good Shepherd, who cared for and protected “His flock”, just like those shepherds that starry night. So, why wouldn’t it be the shepherds that God wanted to tell first? After all, it takes one to know one.

Ephesians 1:16 ” I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers.”

The Apostle Paul always made a point of thanking those he was writing to. He showed his appreciation to the people who meant so much to him by thanking God for their faith and love. When we were first married, my husband and I decided we would not exchange gifts at Christmas, but rather write a letter to each other. On Christmas morning we read the letters to each other. Over the last 26 years these letters have evolved, but always include appreciation for the mundane and unnoticed things we both do for each other daily. The letters give us a chance to focus on just why God brought us together in the first place, reminiscing about the past year, and looking forward to the future. This Christmas Season, I encourage you to write a letter of appreciation to someone special, thanking them for their love and faithfulness.

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