“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.”
This passage really struck me today for a number of different reasons. So here are some thoughts on it.
“May the God of hope…”
God is the God of hope. If you want to find hope then he is the origin and provider of hope. If you ever feel hopeless you can turn to him knowing he has an answer. He not only provides a sense of hope he actually is Hope, it is in his name.
“…fill you with all joy and peace as you trust him…”
Putting our trust in him means relying on what he says. Believing what he says about you and trusting that he is in control of your life, the world and every situation you find yourself in. It means believing he loves you and believing he can make you whole. Pauls prayer is that as we trust him we will be filled with all joy and peace. Not just a little but completely full as much as is possible. The kind of joy and peace which does not bow down to any circumstance in our life. As we walk in trust of God this is what we can expect.
“…so that you may overflow with hope…”
The purpose for our being filled to all fullness with peace and joy is so that we will overflow with hope. It is not that we would have nice feelings and walk around looking smug. When people see our lives and realise that circumstances cannot steal our peace and cannot steal our joy they will realise we have hope. The hope that is within us, given to us by the God of hope will be overflowing in a way that means people will take notice. It is not the sort of hope that only helps us stay strong internally but the kind that cannot help but blossom and burst forth effecting everyone in our lives. Hope spilt out wherever we are. The hopeless will see Hope.
“…overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
The hope that bubbles up within us has another important outlet. It is not just that our response to circumstances and refusal to choose fear shows a strength. The power of the Holy Spirit should be the natural outlet for overflowing hope. What does that mean? Many would say the power of the Holy Spirit could be displayed in many good ways but what did Paul mean? For me the key to this passage is found a few verses later.
“18 I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what I have said and done— 19 by the power of signs and wonders, through the power of the Spirit of God.”
One way that hope should overflow in our lives should be through the working of signs and wonders. In lives circumstances we should go one step further than displaying peace and joy. We should be inviting God to come and work supernaturally. Next time you are in a tough situation don’t only ask for peace. Ask for an opportunity where God can perform a miracle in the lives of those around you. Pray for that sprained ankle, heal the sick, cast out demons and bring the Kingdom of God wherever you go! It is the supernatural peace and joy that we have that will make such boldness possible. The overflow of hope is revealed through the power of the Holy Spirit. The power of the Holy Spirit is revealed through working of signs and wonders wherever we go. Let’s live a life where the God of Hope fills us with hope and we simply overflow!