Devotional for Friday January 15th

Good Morning Everyone,
 
Our theme for this month: “Resilience”
 
Our Bible verse for today: “I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened so that you may know what is the hope of his calling, what is the wealth of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the mighty working of his strength.” Ephesians 1:18-19 (CSB)
 
Our thought for today: “Keep your fork because the best is yet to come.”
 
I once read a story about a woman who was buried with a fork in her hand. It’s true. As her friends came to view her body laid out in the casket they were surprised and confused to see a fork in her hand.
 
Later, in the sermon, the preacher explained that the fork was there at her request. You see, this fine lady had been a good Southern Baptist her entire life and she was a member of the First Baptist Church of the Covered Dish. They were famous for their potlucks and if you’ve even been to a Southern Baptist potluck, then you know that the best part is the dessert table. So, once the dishes are cleared away after the main course you “keep your fork” because “the best is yet to come”. For this woman the symbol of the fork was a reminder that even in death, “the best is yet to come” because she had the promise of heaven waiting for her. She lived with that hope and she then died with that hope – and she had fun with it in the process!
 
Resilient Christians learn to live with hope – with the expectation that the best is yet to come. That’s their attitude about eternity in heaven, but it’s also their attitude about all of life. Resilient Christians have great faith in the sovereignty, love, and goodness of God. They know that God is watching over them, guiding them, and fulfilling His good and perfect plan for them. Therefore, they live with hope and with the eager expectation of good things to come. That’s what Paul was saying in Ephesians 1:18-19. His prayer for his readers was that they would learn to live with hope.
 
In his book “If You Want to Walk on Water You’ve Got to Get Out of The Boat” pastor John Ortberg writes, “Hope is the fuel that the human heart runs on … Hope includes all the psychological advantages of optimism, but it is rooted in something deeper.” He was writing about spiritual living. People who have learned to live with hope focus on more than just the issues of the moment. They have learned that with God there is always a higher purpose and there is always something more and better waiting for them. So, they have hope (optimism, but at a deeper level).
 
I encourage you to train yourself in the habit of being hopeful. Learn to live beyond optimism. God is good, all the time, and your future is bright.
 
God Bless,
Pastor Jim
Copyright © 2021 Oak Hill Baptist Church, All rights reserved.

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