Welcome again to this monthly series that is all about focusing on growing virtues of a godly woman. Last month’s was on virtue and you can read it here. A few ‘boring’ things before we get started – I will get all my meanings from dictionary.reference.com unless otherwise stated. For my verses, I will be using my Complete Jewish Bible, unless otherwise stated. There, I think that covers it. So let’s dive right in!
- the feeling that what is wanted can be had or that events will turn out for the best
- to look forward to with desire and reasonable confidence
- to believe, desire or trust
- to place trust
Here are a few synonyms – expectancy, longing
1 Peter 1:3-6 “Praised be God, Father of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah, who, in keeping with his great mercy, has caused us, through the resurrection of Yeshua the Messiah from the dead, to be born again to a living hope, to an inheritance that cannot decay, spoil or fade, kept safe for you in heaven. Meanwhile, through trusting, you are being protected by God’s power for a deliverance ready to be revealed at the Last Time. Rejoice in this, even though for a little while you may have to experience grief in various trials.”
My commentary (Jewish New Testament Commentary) shares the Greek word for ‘born again’ , that can also be rendered ‘born from above’. I really like this different wording of it, ‘born from above’. We all know we were born once from our mothers, but to be born from above gives me a mental image of that moment when my sins were forgiven. And then he reminds us that as we trust, we are protected forever. That protection does not mean that life will be easy-peasy, a ‘bowl full of cherries’ or whatever idiom you want to use. Our salvation does not come with a guarantee of everything going our way, in fact we are promised quite the opposite. But I do love the last sentence. “Rejoice in this….” We are to go through our sufferings rejoicing. Now, I can tell you that I have not been rejoicing lately. More like whimpering, honestly. But if I have this hope in His great mercy, in the inheritance – should I not be focusing instead on that?
Romans 5:2-5 “Also through him and on the ground of our trust, we have gained access to this grace in which we stand; so let us boast about the hope of experiencing God’s glory. But not only that, let us also boast in our troubles; because we know that trouble produces endurance, endurance produces character, and character produces hope; and this hope does not let us down, because God’s love for us has already been poured out in our hearts through the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit) who has been given to us.”
‘let us boast in our troubles’ – now, how many of us really think ‘yay!!! troubles! trials!’ ha, now that’s not really what he’s calling us to do, now is it? it’s changing our regular attitude of focusing on the difficulties, and instead on our Savior. For look at what we get as a result of relying on God – endurance, character and hope!
2 Corinthians 4:16-18 “This is why we do not lose courage. Though our outer self is heading for decay, our inner self is being renewed daily. For our light and transient troubles are achieving for us an everlasting glory whose weight is beyond description. We concentrate not on what is seen but on what is not seen, since things seen are temporary, but things not seen are eternal.”
I really love this verse. Go ahead and read the first two sentences again. Courage. Renewed daily. Yes! Yes! I had to look up transient and here’s the meaning – lasting for a short time, impermanent. Keep your focus on what is eternal, on what truly matters, for on that there is an ‘everlasting glory’.
Psalms 3:2 – 6 “Adonai, how many enemies I have! How countless are those attacking me; how countless are those who say of me, ‘There is no salvation for him in God’. But you, Adonai, are a shield for me; you are my glory, you lift my head high. With my voice I call out to Adonai, and he answers me from his holy hill. I lie down and sleep, then wake up again, because Adonai sustains me.”
He is our shield. Our glory. He lifts up our head and he answers us. He sustains us. He is the reason to have hope.
Here are 2 printables for you – let me know if they don’t work!