Every time the mega-powerball lottery prizes get into the stratosphere, I toy with the idea of buying a ticket. It’s kind of a joke because I barely know how! One Christmas, someone bought me those stocking stuffer lottery tickets, and I didn’t even know how to find out if I had won anything. I’ve just never been much of a gambler. Actually, my heart aches for those folks who believe that their lives would be so much better if only they had a bunch of money. (I just want the winnings to build out the Oregon campus, even though our video feed is pretty sweet!).
Statistics show that lottery winners do not typically dwell in the “happily ever after” category. The tabloids show with stunning regularity that money and fame do not automatically lead to happiness or contentment. As Christ followers, we can look to our Savior, Jesus, as the source of our hope, fulfillment, and joy. When we trust him with our hopes, our needs, and our heart’s desires, we can have confidence that he is all we need. He never says we will have all we want (how could we simple humans even know what that might be?), but he does offer to be our source of joy and peace when we trust in him.
I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.
I once heard pastor and evangelist Greg Laurie talk about an exercise he would do with high school students. He gave each of them three slips of paper and told them to write on each slip something they believed they couldn’t live without. Then one by one, he told them to discard the slips of paper. The point of the exercise is that if the thing you can’t live without can be taken from you—family, spouse, career, car—your life is always one slip away from insecurity. Letting go of what you cannot hold onto anyways makes room to trust Jesus.
Jesus, our Lord, has promised never to leave or forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). You can never lose Him. When we place our trust in Jesus, he becomes our source of hope. He fills us with joy and peace, regardless of our circumstances.
What is your source of hope (money, career, relationships, possessions, social life, something else)?
Could you lose it? What then?
Determine what (or in whom) you might be trusting besides Jesus and then decide to let go of it (them). Tell a trusted friend and ask them to help you decide what steps you should take. Ask your friend to hold you accountable as you pray for God to take care of it, and make room for trusting Jesus with those concerns.
My gracious Father, how I love that you love me! The hope that you bring fills my heart with joy and peace! You work all things together for my good, no matter how my circumstances may appear to me now. I trust you. I trust you. I trust you. Help me trust you! Amen.
This post was written by Lauri White. Lauri is one of the 25 people who God used to start CedarCreek 21 years ago, and was on staff until 2013. She and her husband Mike love to travel the country in their motor home with their kitties Jane & Mary. Lauri is passionate about prayer, and about helping women discover who they are in Christ. She doesn’t tweet but you can follow her and Mike’s adventures on Facebook.
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