God is my hope, my encouragement, my confidence.
When we face difficult times in our life, the follower of Christ finds hope and encouragement in the words of God to us – the Bible. God Himself is our hope, our encouragement, our confidence. “We overflow with confidence in His promises.”
4 For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope and overflow with confidence in His promises.
5 Now may the God who gives endurance and who supplies encouragement grant that you be of the same mind with one another according to Christ Jesus, 6 so that with one accord you may with one voice glorify and praise and honor the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Because He is the One and Only God, this same God who designed this world (Hebrews 11:3), this God who knew you and me before the foundation of the earth – also cared enough to send us His Holy Spirit to reside inside our soul (Acts 1:8; Acts 2:38). Now, every moment, He is inside our soul.
God the Holy Spirit is always with us, to be our hope, to be our encouragement, to be our confidence (to be our power, to be our strength, to be our Comforter…). No matter what we are going through, we can turn to Him for whatever we need.
He is greater than any sickness, plague, or virus
He is greater than all my sorrows
He is greater than all my fears
He is greater than all my sins
He is greater than those who would persecute me for my faith
Whatever tests my faith – He is greater. When I am alone, He is by my side. When I am unemployed, He is my confidence. When I am sick, He gives me hope.
I refuse to replace God and His hope, His encouragement, His confidence – with anything else. Trials come at me to take away…. But the Holy Spirit inside me is greater:
1 John 4:4 Little children (believers, dear ones), you are of God and you belong to Him and have [already] overcome them [the agents of the antichrist]; because He who is in you is greater than he (Satan) who is in the world [of sinful mankind].
The heroes of the faith that lived and died before our times are examples for us to follow. All Scripture was written for us:
For them, God was greater than all their trials. They did not skip past the bad. They believed God in the midst of great oppression – even though they did not see deliverance.
13 All these died in faith [guided and sustained by it], without receiving the [tangible fulfillment of God’s] promises, only having seen (anticipated) them and having welcomed them from a distance, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth.
Even so, as they, we may die before seeing God’s deliverance. No one skips past the bad of life. We go through the good and the bad of it.
A word of warning: If your “faith” is a “faith lite” type of faith, then you misunderstand holiness.
God is a holy God. As such, God cannot accept “faith lite”. He accepts only those who come to Him in sincerity and truth. You may not realize it: Are you resisting God? With what lie have you replaced God’s truth?
For they exchanged
the truth of God for a lie….
– Romans 1:25
- we live in vanity and pride,
- futility and despair,
- futile speculations and darkened foolish hearts,
- we suppress the truth
- we actively support and life evil ways of life contrary to God’s plan for mankind,
- we live in a freedom of wonton abandon (actually enslaved to sin) and
- …hopeless, totally alone.
Romans 1:17 …As it is written
and forever remains written,
“The just and upright shall live by faith.”
Even if we never see deliverance, as so many heroes in Hebrews 11:36-40 never saw, we live with meaningful purpose and satisfying hope in God – until our days are over (days He’s already counted)… and we go to our true home to live personally with God.
Now faith is the assurance (title deed, confirmation) of things hoped for (divinely guaranteed), and the evidence of things not seen [the conviction of their reality—faith comprehends as fact what cannot be experienced by the physical senses]. 2 For by this [kind of] faith the men of old gained [divine] approval. 3 By faith [that is, with an inherent trust and enduring confidence in the power, wisdom and goodness of God]….”
Read the full text of the heroes of our faith in Hebrews 11.
…Let me be plain: I have come to the conclusion that no one ever lived the Christian life “in general,” or by faith in the abstract. No one ever laid hold of the benefits in Christ except by believing Him in this present moment.
This is strenuous and conscious and constant believing. The kingdom of God comes and “the violent take it by force” (Matthew 11:12). They sue for grace. They say, like Jacob, “I won’t let you go until you bless me.”
They ransack God’s Word for promises. They believe them like a 5-year-old and not like a sophisticate. They prefer the plain meaning to the obscurantist theology of unbelief. They call forth what’s theirs in Christ without double-mindedness. Francis Schaeffer puts it well:
Strenuous believers say “the reality of the resurrection is not something to push off into a strange dimension. It is meaningful in our normal dimension.”
- They redefine normal: “The fruits are normal; not to have them is not to have the Christian life which should be considered usual.”
- They get specific: They insist that God “increase” their love (1 Thessalonians 3:12).
- They expect Him to do “far more abundantly than all that we ask or think” (Ephesians 3:20).
- They refuse to see as hyperbole, “All things are possible for one who believes” (Mark 9:23).
- They settle for no less than being “filled with all the fullness of God” (Ephesians 3:19).
- Source: The Holy Spirit in You?
“When we accept Christ, the whole universe becomes our family domain! We become a child of Creator God. In an instant, in that very moment when we confess to God and repent of our sinfulness, and acknowledge Jesus as Lord of our life, Creator God Himself cancels His decree of condemnation against us in His Court — and we are born again, made a brand new creature inside.
Our new life, spirit and soul, begins eternal life as the Holy Spirit of God, part of the “three in one” mysterious Triune God, takes up residence in our body. The Holy Spirit in us seals God’s new covenant promising us eternal life in Christ.”