THE CANDLE OF HOPE!

Dear Friends! 

Let’s talk a few minutes! I have some insight I want to share with you concerning advent. 

The four Sundays preceding Christmas, which is when we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, are recognized for four virtues. The candles on the Advent wreath symbolize hope, love, joy and peace. The candles are lit in that order, beginning November 28, this past Sunday!

This has changed my life!  I’m serious!  I  have felt renewed and refreshed as I have studied about advent and the four attributes. 

I have a challenge for you this Christmas Season.  My challenge is to incorporate these four attributes all month long and I am going to be right here helping you do this! These four attributes, when we practice them, will change your life and renew your spirit. 

The Four Candles of Advent  are: Hope, Love, Joy, Peace

Let’s start off with HOPE and I want you to see how closely HOPE and LOVE are connected! 

 We serve a GOD of HOPE!  To say you have a hope is to say you have an expectation or longing for something or someone! 

In Greek hope means: elpízō– to hope, actively waiting for God’s fulfillment concerning faith He has in-birthed (4102/pístis) through the power of His love (26/agápē).

You are about to see how powerful it is when elpízō– and agápē are connected.  In order to have this HOPE the Bible talks about, we must first understand what AGAPE LOVE is and that HE dwells in us! 

Love is Agape. Agape is Divine. Agape is the God kind of Love. 

Agapē involves recognition and judgment of value. To hold in high esteem. 

Love will  manifest itself to you! Love demonstrated itself by dying on the cross!  This provided proof by, putting itself on display to die for your sins! 

 If you were the only one He had to die for, He would do it just for you!  His love is not based on what you have done or whether you deserve it or not. The Bible says that HE loved you FIRST! There is nothing you can do that will ever separate you from the love of God.  God’s love cannot be changed by your behavior or even lack of faith.  Love is to be accepted as a believer and when it is, it will change your life.  See, Hope and LOVE are so connected.  You cannot have HOPE if you have not experienced the LOVE of God!

Psalm 33:22

May your unfailing love be with us, LORD, even as we put our hope in you.

His love is unfailing, unswerving, and undeserving!  

Hope is something we HOLD on to in the middle of discouragement and the trials of life! 

Hebrews 10: 23-25

Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithfulI; 

 and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, 

25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; [and all the more as you see the day drawing near.]

Hope is something we have as we gather together in God’s house! We have a HOPE that God will meet with us and touch our lives so we can be empowered to overcome the enemy!

Romans 5:5

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.

Hope is poured on us by the power of the Holy Spirit! 

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.

Hope requires trust and is empowered by the Holy Spirit. It is in-birthed by faith that keeps you steadfast, unswerving and persuaded that God will fulfill all His promises concerning you and your family! 

What are you hoping for? What have you been waiting and longing for?  Have you given up on God? Do you feel like He forgot? Well, I have come to encourage you today! Here’s a word for you! 

HANG ON AND KEEP BELIEVING!  NEVER GIVE UP! 

Here’s the thing! God has a timing concerning His promises.  God has a plan concerning you.  Everything that you have gone through has led you to where you are now. Every step you have taken has brought you one step closer to the promise and one step closer to Him, the God of HOPE & LOVE! 

We hope for the things we can not see or the things we do not have.  

Romans 8:24

For in this hope we were saved (sozo which means saved, delivered and healed). But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have?

This is why it’s called HOPE and He is the God of HOPE!

This week, I want to encourage you to renew your hope in God by drawing near to Him and believing that He will do what He said He would do concerning your life, your dreams, your family, your church and your destiny! 

Light the candle of HOPE and let it burn in your heart! 

The Bible says we should keep the flame burning on the altar day and night and never let the flame go out. Do what ever it takes to keep the flame burning inside your heart! 

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