“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13)
Do you see it? The cause and effect progression in this verse?
Trust → Joy & Peace → Power of the Holy Spirit → Overflow of hope
Paul is saying as we trust in God, He fills us with all joy and peace. And as we are trusting and being filled with joy and peace, we are then empowered by the Holy Spirit, which causes us to overflow with hope.
And it all starts with trust.
The hardest little lesson I will be learning for my entire life. The lesson in which I always seem to be taking one step forward and two steps back.
But it works. The days I start out declaring my trust in God are the days I am filled with joy and peace. They are the days when I feel the power of the Spirit around me. They are the days when I overflow with hope. And the days I don’t trust? Those are the days I am tired. Anxious. Lackluster. Void of joy. Unpleasant to be around.
Trust is essential.
“Anyone who trusts in the Lord will never be put to shame.” (Romans 10:11)
No one who trusts in God will ever regret doing so. We will not be dismayed. We will not be put to shame. So we can go forth into each day with the joy and peace that come from simply trusting, knowing there is nothing to worry about that our Father has not already considered. He can be trusted with today and all our tomorrows. Trust is the most basic (and often most difficult) choice we must make. And trust changes everything.
Because when we do trust…when we declare that God is good, that God is able, that God will provide, that God will go with us every step of today and of all those tomorrows, then we have joy. We have peace. We walk in the Spirit. And we overflow with hope.
Begin with trust. End with hope.
Sounds like a good progression to me.