Walking in a Land of Hope

Well to say the least 2013 has been one adventure followed by the next… Besides losing our internet connection for 7 months – and hence the lack of blogging, we have started a new business Cedar Wood – an education facilitation center, changed jobs, had a baby and all got a year older all whilst continuing with the realities of daily life.

Our theme for Christmas last year was Hope. Hope in Christ, Hope in new beginnings, Hope in friendships, Hope in meeting a healthy baby soon, Hope in the starting of a new business, Hope in anticipated family days blooming ahead and often just plain Hope in the fact that we do in fact have the joy of Hoping.

Many times the clouds have gathered, pressure has surmounted, jobs have toppled, relationships have been strained, parenting stretched and one has lost every glimmer of hope. Yet the promise has still stood. The promise of a future, the promise of a tomorrow, the promise of God, saving grace and the promised Hope of forever. Yet the simple small word of “Hope” has been the anchor. The anchor that holds, the anchor that binds, the anchor that bridges us upon the wandering, often storming waves, to the firm unwavering rock below.

As we have walked this uncharted land and forged where we have not been before the sturdy rock of Hope, that sure foundation of all time, has allowed us to hold fast to keep looking ahead and to know tomorrow will come.

As we enter the last months of 2013 our Hope still stands firm, today we stand looking toward the horizon and instead of seeing the endless storming sea of What Next, we are viewing the firm land of tomorrow. Where exactly that tomorrow is or what that land holds we will not know until we step upon its soil. One thing we do however know is that tomorrow is no longer a Hope of a future but rather a sure foundation upon which we are headed, a solid land to which we have been promised.

To live without Hope is to live forever upon the stormy sea of doubt and panic. To live without Hope is to wander aimlessly upon uncharted seas without a compass or the sun to guide one. To live without Hope is to forever swim in darkness with knowing the morning will never come.

Hope is however the light, compass and surety of tomorrow that keeps one moving solidly forward through the darkest, most stormy seas. It’s this Hope upon which we have learned, during this year, to cling and live. And it’s this Hope, the Hope that sends a double rainbow after the most epic storms – that has offered us not only a solace and comfort but fed us with Joy and excitement as we’ve traveled upon this crazy, uncharted path called Our Life!

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Christmas Hope

Every year, for Christmas  we choose a theme and colour scheme for the season. This year it was Hope with the colours gold and white. What a special and beautiful Christmas it turned out to be.

Throughout December we have spoken about Hope an how we need to have Hope in Jesus alone as it is only through Him that we will have true joy and peace. We decorated the lounge in line with the theme using candles and butterflies. It so beautifully reflected the theme and the message to our children.

On Christmas morning we were unable to attend church so instead I sewed little paper pockets and placed butterflies with Bible verses, and a chocolate, inside each one.

For our Bible time we then read through the verses and stuck them upon a gold cross. This was a very special time and helped us focus upon Jesus and the hope we have in him before we opened our gifts.

Having a theme is such a simple idea and yet it helps keep us focused on a different aspect of God every year and makes each year that little bit extra special.

Here are some of the verses we used:

Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Titus 3:5-7 He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.

Romans 5:3-5 We also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.

Romans 8:24-25 For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.

Romans 12:12 12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.

Romans 15:4 For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.

Romans 15:13 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.

Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.

Psalm 39:7 “But now, Lord, what do I look for? My hope is in you.

Psalm 31:24 Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the LORD.

Psalm 147:11 The LORD delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love.

Jeremiah 17:7-8 “But blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD,
whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water
that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes;
its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.”

Lamentations 3:24
I say to myself, “The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him / hope in him”

1 Corinthians 13:13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

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