Morning Prayer Thursday, 14 January 2021
LIVING HOPE IN THE MIDST OF ADVERSITY
“I will praise the Lord, who counsels me; even at night my heart instructs me. I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.”
(Psalm16: 7-8 NIV)
“In Psalm 37 vs.7, David asked, “And now Lord, What do I wait for? My HOPE is in You.” That’s a good question. What are you waiting for? How can you be sure that what you’re waiting for is going to come? David said his hope was in the Lord. Biblical ‘hope’ means confidence in the future. It is a confidence born of faith. Faith, hope and love go together (1 Cor.13). When we have faith in God, we claim His promises, and they give us hope for the future. Hope for the Christian is not a feeling of ‘I hope it’s going to happen’. It’s exciting expectancy because God controls the future. When Jesus Christ is your Saviour and your Lord, the future is your friend. You don’t have to worry.”(Prayers, Praise & Promises by Warren Wiersbe)
Church family, how did you experience 2020? The coronavirus caused thousands of deaths, financial losses; the loss of opportunities for friends and family to get together in order to mark significant occasions: funerals, weddings, milestone birthdays, graduations, births, christenings, church services and other celebrations. Sadly, suffering and grieving is part of life. We will mourn for our loved ones as long as life lasts, as they were such a significant part of our lives. Yet, we can be grateful to God for His faithfulness and grace. He is always with us in the middle of whatever we are going through. In the midst of pain, there is faith, hope and love. Jesus experienced considerable pain in His earthly life; just think of how he suffered on the cross for us. Although we are Christians, we were never promised a pain free life. God is Sovereign, He never fails and is with us in every circumstance of our lives. Last year, a member of my family died, she was a committed Christian. Her last words were: ‘I am excited about going to meet Jesus.’
“Why is this hope so important? When we lose hope, we lose joy in the present because we have no confidence for the future.—- We live on hope, it springs eternal in the human breast. However, it is more than a feeling down inside, it’s a confidence that God is in control, and we have nothing to fear. What is the basis for our hope? It is the character of God. We’ve been born again into a living hope, (1 Peter1:3). It’s not a dead hope that rots and falls apart but a living hope. Its roots go deeper and its fruits grow more wonderful. You can have joy, confidence, encouragement, and even excitement today if you will remember that you have a living hope.” (Source: (Warren Wiersbe). So, let us lift up ourselves, “You have made known to me the path of life: you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.” (Psalm 16:11 NIV).
Let us pray, Loving God may our hope be founded on the promises of your Word. Help us to build up our faith and have confidence in the future, as it unfolds. Help us to reflect on the past year, and list the gracious blessings which you gave us. We pray that as more of us are vaccinated we will see the way ahead, out of the darkness and into the light; as the best is yet to be. Father, we hope that this year will be one of hope and new horizons. Let us all understand that each of us must act responsibly so that families, communities- the country can move forward with living HOPE and renewed energies.
“And I said to a man who stood at the gate of the year:
‘Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown.’
and he replied:
“Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the Hand of God.
That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way.”
So I went forth, and finding the Hand of God, trod gladly into the night.
And he led me towards the hills and the breaking of day in the lone East.”
(Minnie Louise Haskins)
One more step along the world I go
- “One more step along the world I go,
one more step along the world I go,
from the old things to the new
keep me travelling along with You.
And it’s from the old I travel to the new,
Keep me travelling along with you.
- Round the corner of the world I turn,
more and more about the world I learn
all the new things that I see
you’ll be looking at along with me.
- As I travel through the bad and good
keep me travelling the way I should.
where I see no way to go
you’ll be telling me the way I know.
- Give me courage when the world is rough
keep me loving though the world is tough
leap and sing in all I do,
keep me travelling along with you.
(Stainer and Bell Ltd.)
“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.”
(Colossians 3:16 NIV)
14th January 2021