Hope Notes 12/30/2020

December 30, 2020

Hello Hoper!      Christmas has come and gone, leaving us with a tangle of tinsel and ribbon, some old pine needles, and hopefully happy memories.  We take with us the fact that the whole reason we celebrated is the birth of Jesus. David Jeremiah said that “The birth of Jesus is proof once again that God is a promise-keeper.” Interestingly, the Hebrew language has no exact word that corresponds to promise. In the Old Testament scriptures we find words like word, speak, and say that are used instead. In other words, God’s Word itself is the same as a promise. Friedreich Wilhelm Krummacher said, “God’s promises are, virtually, obligations that he imposes upon himself.”  Isn’t that cool?! 
     I started wondering how many promises of God are in the Bible.  Upon researching this question, I found numbers ranging from 3000 – 30,000!  However many actual promises there are, not every single promise belongs to us.  Some, for example, were specifically for Israel.  “Therefore say to the children of Israel: “I am the LORD; I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, I will rescue you from their bondage, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments. I will take you as My people, and I will be your God.” (Exodus 6:6-7)  But there are enough for us that we will never even realize all of them in our short time on this earth! Here are just a few: His everlasting love. (Jeremiah 31:3)  Never leave us. (Deuteronomy 31:6)  Forgive and forget all our sins. (Isaiah 43:25)  Hear our prayers. (John 14:13-14)  Give us peace. (John 14:27)
     God’s promises are UNFAILING. “…….. Not one word has failed of all the good promises he gave through his servant Moses. (1 Kings 8:56) David says it in Psalm 138:2: “I will give thanks to Your name for Your unfailing love and faithfulness, because Your promises are backed by all the honor of Your name.”  God’s promises are UPHELD. “God also bound himself with an oath, so that those who received the promise could be perfectly sure that he would never change his mind.” (Hebrews 6:17 NLT) God’s promises are FULFILLED ON SCHEDULE. “But when the set time had fully come….” (Galatians 4:4) Trust Him.  Trust His promises.

Trusting in a God Who Never Fails – Lois
January 3 – Visible Gods Preferred (Exodus 32:1-6)

Have you ever struggled with the fact that you can’t see or hear God physically? As a normal person, it is a challenge to interact with someone that isn’t ever visible. In dark moments, we question if He’s there, if He cares, and if He even exists. Our humanity prefers to know through our physical senses or abilities.  If we can touch something with our hands or see it for ourselves, we’re a lot more confident in what we know.  Or if we can understand a truth for ourselves and have it make sense to us, we will readily accept that truth. But when we’re asked to know God by faith alone, we often struggle. Israel struggled too.  In some sense, they could see and hear God. But they preferred to find a god more manageable and controllable.  While Moses is on Mount Sinai talking with the Lord, Israel comes up with an unbelievable plan to make another god for themselves.  And surprisingly, we can probably all relate!

Each year we typically put out a read-through-the bible plan to encourage you to get into God’s word as part of your new year’s goals. This year we’ll be reading a different book of the bible each month. For January we’re starting with Matthew!
Giving statements will be ready in January and available for pick-up the first 2 Sundays of the month. If we have your email address, your report will be sent there. All reports not picked-up in church will then be mailed out. If you have any questions, or your address has changed, contact Damon Briggs at dbriggs@mandnco.com

ONLINE DIRECTORY: Deadline to register Jan 1st
It can be difficult to stay connected to our church family when we all aren’t able to meet regularly in person! Make sure you are a part of our Online Directory so you can get in touch with your fellow Hopers! Our directory is private to Hope, and each member has their own personal login. You can update your info at any time! To be a part, fill out this form by Jan 1st.

We will be resuming our study in Ephesians on January 6th via livestream only. We hope you can tune-in on Facebook or YouTube! Bible study will remain virtual for the month of January.

Keep an eye out for ways to join one of these short-term small groups launching in February!

Faith as the Fix – Deb McCarson: Thurs in Feb

Fight Club – Dan Lein: 2nd & 4th Tues in Feb & MarThe Enneagram & Spiritual Growth – Dave Hallahan & Emily DiLorenzo: Thurs in Feb & Mar

YOUTH GROUP: Currently On Hiatus
We will not be meeting 1/3. Happy New Year! 
Currently On Hiatus
Stay tuned for plans for the new year!