by Pastor Rick Duncan
One of the greatest announcements of hope came from an angel to the shepherds on the night Jesus was born.
“Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:10-11).
In preparation to speak on Christian Hope on Christmas Eve 2021, I crafted a prayer for hope after looking up every instance of the use of the word “hope” in the Old and New Testaments.
Perhaps this prayer might encourage you as it has encouraged me.
O Lord God, the Hope of Israel,
You have called every Christian to live in light of the hope that is found in Christ alone and that is attained only through the gospel of grace. Thank You that this gift of hope is not something I have to produce through self-effort, but is empowered by the Your Spirit and encouraged by Your Word. Grant that I may enjoy and exhibit the hope to which You have called me so that I can be more and more pleasing to You, Father.
Teach me that Christian hope is not a worldly optimism that present circumstances will necessarily improve, but the godly expectation that You will redeem and reward Your people in the life to come. May this ultimate hope for the glory that is coming fuel my belief that You are now causing all the things that happen in my life on earth to work together for my good and for Your glory.
Thank You that my hope is not wishful thinking, but a confident expectation based on Your character as a loving Father who keeps His promises. Thank You that Your redemption, deliverance, and salvation will ultimately be mine because You have caused me to be born again to a living hope and because I have been justified by faith.
May my hope in You enable me to wait on You, to rejoice in sufferings, to endure hardships, to display proven character, and to find encouragement from the Scriptures. Remind me that my hope will increase as spend unhurried time with You in expectant prayer.
And so, Lord, even in the midst of the trials I face, may the hope You’ve given me enable me to experience a supernatural joy, purity, righteousness, security, endurance, and peace that causes others to notice it and to desire it. May hope stabilize my soul like an anchor as it connects me to Your steadfastness. May the confidence in You that I display open doors for me to gently and respectfully give a reason for this hope that is in me.
Finally, I ask, O Lord, that my hope in You will bring great glory to You.
In Jesus’ name, Amen.
This prayer was taken from truths about hope found in Ephesians 1:17-18, Ephesians 4:4, Psalm 62:5, Lamentations 3:24, Colossians 1:27, I Timothy 4:10, Hebrews 6:18-20, I Peter 1:20-21, Colossians 1:23, II Thessalonians 2:16-17, Romans 15:13, Psalm 119:81, Psalm 130:5-6, Romans 15:4, Psalm 147:11, Colossians 1:27, Titus 1:1-2, Titus 3:7, Hebrews 6:18-20, I Peter 1:3, Romans 8:18-28, Psalm 73:22, Psalm 130:7, Lamentations 3:19-24, Hebrews 10:23, Psalm 130:7, Psalm 33:18-19, Psalm 42:11, I Peter 1:3, Romans 5:1-2, Proverbs 23:17-18, Isaiah 8:17, Galatians 5:5, Titus 3:11-14, Romans 5:3-4, Romans 15:4, Psalm 33:22, Psalm 39:7, Jeremiah 14:7-8, Proverbs 10:28, I John 3:2-3, Galatians 5:5, Acts 2:25-26, Romans 15:4, Romans 15:4, I Peter 3:15, Romans 5:2, Ephesians 1:12, Colossians 1:27, and Titus 2:13.