“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” (Romans 15:13).
We went to the movie theater last weekend. I’m one of those movie watchers who think you can’t enjoy a good movie without a box of popcorn. The young man at the snack counter dipped a scoop of popcorn into my box, then scooped some more. And then he took the back of the scoop and packed down the popcorn into my box. Would you believe he scooped some more popcorn so that the popcorn was flowing over the sides when he handed me my box? I love it when that happens.
Our Bible verse speaks of 4 terrific blessings that overflow into your life as you trust the Lord. Actually these blessings are the result of your hope in God. Read Romans 15:13 again and see if you can pick out the following 4 blessings.
Bible joy is different from ordinary happiness. Our happiness often depends on the circumstances of our lives. For example, if we get a pay raise at work we feel happy. But if we are mistreated at work we don’t feel so happy.
Joy in the Bible is that deep-down sense of well-being, or delight, in your heart because you know God is in control of your circumstances, whether they are favorable or unfavorable. Bad things might happen to you, but because you are trusting God, you know He will fulfill His promise in Romans 8:28—He will work out all things for your good. That’s a cause for real joy.
In the Bible peace means 2 things. One, it can mean you are at peace because you have trusted Jesus’ death on the cross for the forgiveness of your sins. This peace is often referred to as peace with God.
Two, another kind of peace could be called the peace of God. Problems come into your life. You pray about them, you trust God for help and strength in dealing with them. You have a sense of peace that God is in charge of your troubles.
We do live in a world of noise, confusion, stress, pressure and difficulties. People long for peace. Our verse from Romans 15 teaches us that this wonderful peace is a gift God gives to us when we trust Him.
Our Bible verse mentions hope twice. Do you sometimes despair about your future? Do you easily give up when your problems overwhelm you? Do you find yourself saying sometimes that your situation is hopeless?
Bible hope is the confident assurance that all is well. Why are things well? Because you are trusting God, whom our verse says is “the God of hope.” God isn’t negative. He never pouts. He’s never in a bad mood. Instead He is a hopeful God, and wants you to have His hopefulness.
The power spoken of at the end of our verse refers to the power that is ours through the ministry of the Holy Spirit. When you feel weak, worn out, limited, don’t give up. Strength is yours as a gift of the Holy Spirit because you are trusting God.
Our trust in God is a source of strength and courage in the face of life’s harshest trials. When you are feeling overworked and exhausted, your trust in God provides fresh energy.
Are you experiencing these 4 blessings in your life today? If not, put your hope in God who loves you like crazy. You will experience these 4 blessings overflowing in your life.