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"... being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised." Romans 4. 21

This verse refers to Abraham, whose trust in God is legendary. With only that trust to go on, Abraham left home with no idea where he was supposed to go. He believed God when God told him that he and his wife Sarah would have a son and descendants as numerous as the stars, even though they were both barren and old. And when that precious son finally arrived and was approaching manhood, Abraham obeyed when God told him he would have to sacrifice Isaac and everything he represented.

Abraham was not perfect. The stories about him in the Bible confirm that. But he did trust God implicitly and for two reasons: he believed in God's integrity and he believed in God's ability. Abraham trusted God when God called him to step out in faith and put his life - and his hopes and dreams - into his hands. It liberated Abraham to flourish into the fulness of his potential. It sustained him when the going got tough, as it did - frequently. And it rewarded him with everything God had promised - and more.

Someone has defined hope as "clinging on to the promises of God." Are you a hopeful person? Even if you never thought of yourself as such, take a moment to consider the promises God has made to you. You will find these in the Bible. You will also find them in your heart: those more personal yearnings which are consistent with the more general commitment which God makes to all people and yet apply specifically to your situation. Because God has made these promises you can be sure of them because, as Abraham first believed and then had confirmed through experience, God is both trustworthy and able to fulfil everything that he has committed to.

There will be times when it does not look as if God is going to come through for you. Rather than wringing your hands in despair or giving up, these are exactly when it is time to do some clinging... As your experience of God's integrity and power increases, your attitude will change: from wondering, full of doubt, IF God can fulfil what he has promised to wondering, full of expectation, HOW God will fulfil what he has promised...

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