Praying with Hope! 21 Days of Hope
As we begin these 21 days of Hope leading up to Easter 2021, I want to guide us to a place of prayer. Nothing happens for the Kingdom of God without Prayer. I love Alvin Reed’s definition of prayer. He says, “Prayer is intimacy with God that leads to the fulfillment of His Purposes”
We want God to fill us with his Hope during this season of Easter so that we can SPREAD his HOPE to those around us. Lets look at that amazing morning.
THAT AMAZING MORNING
The Gospel of Mark’s account of the women’s first interaction with Jesus after his resurrection is astonishing. Let’s look at Mark 16:1, 5-8
When the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices, so that they might go and anoint him.
And entering the tomb, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, dressed in a white robe, and they were alarmed. And he said to them, “Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has risen; he is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going before you to Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.”
And they went out and fled from the tomb, for trembling and astonishment had seized them, and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid.
Six Simple Prayers of Hope
The words that the angel spoke to the women, can guide us as we pray for this time of Hope to impact our lives, our families, and our communities. Here are six simple prayers that can guide us through our 21 days of Hope. I believe if you pray these each day, you will have MORE HOPE in your life!
And he said to them, “Do not be alarmed.”
How often do we allow our fears, our anxiety, or even shock of a situation to dictate our lives. Jesus resurrected and when he appeared to the disciples he brought peace. He said to them two times, “Peace be with you.” (John 20:19, 21). We will not be able to EXPERIENCE the fullness of his hope or SHARE His hope frazzled, fearful, and anxious.
“Jesus, I will not be afraid or alarmed. I trust in you. Even when things may not seem peaceful, Jesus give me your peace. Jesus I receive your peace.”
“You seek Jesus of Nazareth”
We tend to search and seek so many different things, but they always leave us unsatisfied. As we have been studying in John, Jesus is the bread of life. “Whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst”. These women went searching, and they found even more than they were looking for. And when we search Jesus for who He is, and not what He gives us, we will be overwhelmed by Him.
“Jesus, we come seeking you during this 21 days of Hope! Show us more of who you are!”
“Who was crucified”
As we come to celebrate the greatest day of hope, we must never forget that Jesus Christ was crucified for the sins of the world. There was no other way possible for people to be forgiven. Jesus prayed in the Garden, “Father, all things are possible for you. Remove this cup from me.” (Mark 14:36) Why didn’t God remove it from Him? Because this was the only way for you and me to be forgiven. “Without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness of sin.” (Hebrews 9:22b)
“Thank you Jesus, for taking my place on that cross. For dying for me, and for offering forgiveness. May my Hope flow from the cross. That you loved me so much, you gave your life for me. And you loved the world, so send me into the world with your Hope!”
“He has risen; He is not here.”
The reality of the Resurrection should feed my heart every day with Hope. There is nothing you will face, that the resurrection of Jesus doesn’t conquer. We live in a world that is broken and dying. But Jesus has resurrection power, and promises that power to us.
“Jesus there are dead areas in my life. There are hopeless areas in my life. Give me your resurrection power today”
“But go, tell his disciples and Peter.”
The message of the resurrection is not meant to be kept silent. We must proclaim the good news that He is risen. We need to encourage one another when we lose sight of the truth. And most importantly, we must tell others who don’t know or who feel God doesn’t love them. The angel made it clear, “go tell the disciples AND PETER.” Peter was the disciple who denied Jesus 3 times. He was full of shame and regret, but Jesus didn’t forget about him. There are many people around us who might be filled with pain and regret. Let’s take the good news to all who we know.
“Jesus help me not to keep this good news in. But let me have opportunity to share with people all around me.”
“There you will see Him, just as He told you.”
The resurrection was the greatest promise Jesus ever kept. He predicted 3 different times that he would rise again. Every word of Jesus is a promise He will keep, if we believe and trust in Him. That should fill us to overflowing with Hope, every day!
“Jesus thank you for keeping your promises. Today I trust your promises for my life. May that fill me with Hope each and every day.”