Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…
“Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1 (NIV)
The winds were gusting through a sun-shiny bright and cloudless day as I awoke this morning. My younger Granddaughter Ellie Kate was still asleep on the trundle bed next to her normal bed which I was on—she had orchestrated the sleeping room assignments last night, and, of course, I was thrilled with mine.
That simple morning scene of a precious sleeping Granddaughter waking to a windy, bright and cloudless morning seemed but another of the many Godly reminders of the transforming winds of hope that blow away the stuff of our lives, and which penetrated the hearts of over 1,400 men this weekend in Tampa, Florida during the Impact for Living Men’s Conference.
Paul’s encouragement to us in his letter to the Ephesians always seems an appropriate follow-up to me to the verse from the writer of Hebrews above. From the man who endured much for the Hope he held in his heart, he shares this for the start to all of our mornings…
“Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 3: 13b-14 (NIV)
As our day begins…do we have that kind of faith even though we can’t see what is coming around the bend of our tomorrows? A faith that causes us to “press on” in the face of disappointments, setbacks and heartaches, by continuing to embrace what we hope for? That faith which causes us to focus our hearts on the goal which God has called us to—while trying to find our purpose in life—with a certainty of heart that says “Thy will be done.”
A faith that causes us to press-on in the face of doubt and doubters, a barebones budget, and the hope that the vision God laid before us was really His and not ours—and then to watch as the Impact for Living Conference for Men became a “life-changing” moment of hope for those who came.
A faith that causes us to press-on to find a cure for the debilitating disease of Cystic Fibrosis, and then listen to one of the conference speakers—who has been an advocate for a cure—announce that he had just received a letter indicating a cure may have been found.
A faith that causes a father and mother, entrusted with two precious sons with autism, to press-on by beginning an outreach to families similarly situated as they are—only to find that the vision God had laid on their hearts has already begun to bring His hope to those families.
I don’t know what you’re facing as day opens before you and the week unfolds before you sometimes faster than your grip. Perhaps you’ve lost a job, or a family member has an illness that will affect their future, a relationship has taken a detour you never saw coming, or you just don’t seem to know what the rest of your days should look like. Embrace for your life the faith the writer of Hebrews called us to.
Faith—being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. It’s a faith that causes us to press on in the face of all that is before us, all that happens to try to throw us off course, the distractions of doubt and criticism, and the heartaches, failures and disappointments that will surely litter the path along our way.
It’s faith that blows through our lives with the fresh winds of hope when we least expect it, reminding us again that the God of it all is still in charge, has never left us, and is tapping on our shoulder reminding us that He still has much for us to do—for Him and for others.
It’s a faith that will carry us through all of our days…into the Hope of all of our tomorrows…always with the God of all eternity.
In His Name—Scott
Thank you, the faith that you speak of was so clearly evidence at the conference this past weekend. I was truly touched and have in the following couple of days seen God working in my life as a husband and as a father. My faith in Him I would say has always been strong but somehow my faith in me seemed to be so much stronger. I loved what was said about potential and how that really dealt with authority. I am excited about what God is going to do in and through my life not because of who I am but because of Who He is and what He has done. Galatians 5:17 was brought to my attention through the conference and I am aware that my impact is affected by my surrender to the control of the Holy Spirit working in me.
Thank you for your ministry and you love for God.
Scott & Nathan, WOW! Thank you for listening to God and developing the Impact for Living conference. My son and I were very encouraged by the speakers and the command to utilize our respective platforms for His glory. I believe that many lives were turned toward Jesus Christ through your obedience. Press on dear friends, Rich
You are so right about how privileged we grandparents are. I can always tell when it’s time, when I MUST see my grandson. Even though he lives (we’re so lucky) just 3 1/2 miles from us, and we see him pretty much weekly, the longing to get a “hit” of him after too long a time is palpable sometimes. His laugh and even his grumpiness when he’s sick or acting a little willful (though he’s neither often) have given us many, many moments and memories we cherish. It’s such a gift to watch him grow up and to watch our son and his wife love him. One of the unexpected joys (my friend used to say being a grandparent is one of life’s most unalloyed joys) of having a grandchild is that you get to witness your own child coming to understand a parent’s love, from the parent’s side.
Thanks,too for reminding me how much the other members of my family mean to me. Even those I don’t see often, those who live hundreds of miles away, well…even those keep more than a little bit of my heart with them.
Thanks, finally, for your reassuring faith that is so evident in your words every week, week after week after week.
with much gratitude,