Hope is What We Crave

 

Romans 5:1-5 “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God. And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.”  NASB

Thinking about hope tonight.  I guess it is an unstated yet underlying theme in some of my other posts, when talking about the challenges of life. But I wanted to focus on the positive side of things here. The passage above talks about tribulations, but it also talks about positive things being born from those tribulations. Perseverance. Proven character. And hope. “And hope does not disappoint…

We have peace with God. His love is in our hearts through the Holy Spirit. We have a rich hope indeed.

So there it is. I don’t have any long-winded commentary to offer you tonight here. But whatever is going on in your life, know that there is hope. Be encouraged.

p.s. This post was partially inspired by a song by for King & Country called “Crave”. Have a listen, and I hope you enjoy it.

Advertisements

Rescue me (our stories aren’t just about us)

 

Psalm 116:1-8 “I love the LORD, because He hears My voice and my supplications. Because He has inclined His ear to me, Therefore I shall call upon Him as long as I live. The cords of death encompassed me And the terrors of Sheol came upon me; I found distress and sorrow. Then I called upon the name of the LORD: “O LORD, I beseech You, save my life!” Gracious is the LORD, and righteous; Yes, our God is compassionate. The LORD preserves the simple; I was brought low, and He saved me. Return to your rest, O my soul, For the LORD has dealt bountifully with you. For You have rescued my soul from death, My eyes from tears, My feet from stumbling.” NASB

This is probably one of my favorite scriptures, just a small snippet of my favorite psalm. I know many people have their own personal favorites, and we could each give a reason why, but I thought I’d just share mine today. I hope my thoughts on it will encourage you.

Continue reading

The Best Missions Advice I Ever Received: Be Who God Made You To Be (guest post by Tyler Hess)

(Tyler Hess blogs about practical and spiritual applications of faith at undistractedchristian and you can follow him on twitterIf you want to write a guest post for missionsmusings, here’s how.)

Two years ago my wife and I went on what might be the riskiest adventure of our lives.

We gave up a fairly comfortable, boring life, in southern California to go minister at a church in the semi-foreign island of Kauia, Hawaii.

I know, I know, it is one of the United States, but it’s a different culture than what we were used to and for the first time in my life I was a minority.

We both grew up in church and we went to Bible college together, so we have heard all kinds of stories about different pastors, missionaries and evangelists doing crazy awesome things from town to town and nation to nation.

What we hadn’t heard until right before we left is the one thing that we needed to hear, which was that we didn’t have to be what other people expected us to be, that we didn’t need to pretend that we were something else entirely.

And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers,

for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ…

Eph 4: 11-12

My wife and I aren’t exactly what you would call “extroverts”.

We’re just quiet people, who like to listen before speaking and who care about getting to know people.

When people think about being a successful missionary, they think about how many people you lead to Christ, about great stories of evangelism and miracles along the way.

They don’t think about getting to know people and encouraging believers in the faith. They don’t think about getting a job and witnessing to co-workers while earning a normal paycheck, just like at home.

The greatest bit of wisdom that I can pass along to any hopeful or present missionaries is that whoever you are at home, that is who you should be when you go out from there, whatever that may be.

Do you know who you are in Christ?

Honestly… (a grumpy missionary gets real)

I’d like to start off with a question: what do you think of when you hear the word “missionary”?  Someone in strange clothing who likes strange food?  (Yak cheese pizza is yummy, by the way.  So is fried eel.)  A fearless church planter going against the odds?  Someone comforting a dying person in the slums?  A jeans-clad, music-loving book-aholic who spends most days in a classroom in the U.S.A.?  The barista at the local Starbucks?
The answer to all of the above could be yes.  I think it is so easy to have a narrow view of what a “missionary” looks like.  So the following is an honest musing of what life looks and feels like to me, depending on the day.