Love, Hope, Peace, Joy
Love, hope, peace, and joy are what Christ promises to all people on earth who recognise that there is a Creator God, ask God to forgive them for the things they’ve done in life that go against His will, and ask Him into their lives as their Lord. How simple is that?
“Let’s talk about love baby.” Next time you listen to the radio, count how many songs in an hour are about “love.” Humanity is wired to love and be loved. Jesus Christ doesn’t just offer us love, He is love, and when we’re in a relationship with Him we can experience His unconditional love and inclusion. He teaches us to forgive and love ourselves, to accept wholesome love and care from God and others, and to give love in much deeper ways than just physical. In speaking of Himself Christ said this, “Greater love has no one than this, that He lay down His life for His friends.”
NZ has the highest teenage suicide rate in the developed world. That tells me that “hope” is being eroded away from our young people. Romans 15:13 tells us that Christ is hope and His Holy Spirit, who lives in every person who believes in Christ, daily restores our hope. In Christ we have a purpose, a place of belonging, and an eternal future. No circumstance or person can take away the truth of our eternal hope.
Jesus says “In me you may have peace,” John 16:33. He goes on to say, “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” It is possible to have Christ’s peace in the middle of illness, poverty, conflict and other stressful situations, because His peace is not bound to earthly circumstances. “Be still and know that I am God,” Psalm 46:10.
Those in relationship with Christ are anointed with the oil of joy, Hebrews 1:9. Joy is different to happiness. Many times I’ve witnessed people go through terminal illness with joy. They may not be happy about their circumstance, but the Holy Spirit in them brings them a personal joy.
Love, hope, peace and joy are yours to have today.