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Romans 4:18-21

Jesus is wonderful! No man could ever do what he has done. Christ and the Father are one. Christ brings counsel to us from God because they are one. Jesus just the same today – The Mighty God, The everlasting Father.

Ephesians 3:20 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think…

Jesus is one with the Father from everlasting to everlasting. He was “all in” and his meat was to do the Father’s will.

Isaiah 9:6-7 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.

God so loved the world – everyone! He gave his only Son. Jesus is Prince of peace, keeps us in perfect peace. He’s our peace.

John 3:16-17 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

Mary and Joseph were espoused, not completely married, but contracted to marry; a marriage solemnly declared to be in the future, and a promise of it made if God permit. After Mary told Joseph she was with child by the Holy Ghost, he was thinking what to do about Mary. He was a just and kind man, one who didn’t jump to conclusions and demand the letter of the law, but he waited before God. In his waiting, Joseph received an answer and he was obedient to God.

Matthew 1:18-23 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily. But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared…in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins. Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet…Behold, a virgin shall…bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which…is, God with us.

The angel came to Joseph in a dream to fulfill the prophesy in Isaiah that a virgin would bring forth Immanuel.

Isaiah 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

An angel announced the Savior to the shepherds and the sign that they would find the baby laying in a manger. The angels were proclaiming Christ’s hope of glory, his mercy, his longsuffering, and of God being with us.

Luke 2:10-14 And the angel said…Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

Paul said Christ in you is the hope of glory.

Colossians 1:25-27 Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfil the word of God; Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages…but now is made manifest to his saints: To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery…which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:

Christ’s birth was given to us as the great foundation of our hopes and fountain of joy in times of great grief and fear – for hope in hopeless situations where God is with us.

Psalm 16:7-9 I will bless the Lord, who hath given me counsel: my reins also instruct me in the night seasons. I have set the Lord always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest in hope.

In 1998, Sister Leslie’s daughter, Margaret, joined the army and was stationed in Georgia. In late spring of 1999 she had a physical as she was being discharged from the army because she couldn’t pass the physical test. The doctors discovered that she had Hodgkin’s lymphoma in a routine chest x-ray. Her symptoms indicated it could be stage 3. Sister Leslie and her husband flew back to be with their daughter during the diagnosis. The biopsy was done on a Saturday. Afterward Sister Leslie asked if Margaret would like to go to Birmingham, Alabama for the church service at Brother Karl Wilson’s congregation where she had friends. She wanted to go so they drove 5 hours to Birmingham. They were met by Brother Wilson who offered support and comfort. The next day they got to Sunday morning service late because of the time change. The choir was singing the song So You Would Know (by the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir). “How many times must I prove how much I love you? How many ways must my love for you I show? How many times must I rescue you from trouble, For you to know just how much I love you?”

The Lord was blessing so they kept singing the verse over and over. Sister Leslie and Margaret were both in tears. At the end of the service Sister Leslie asked Margaret if she’d like to be prayed for and she did. They walked to the front of the church. Brother Wilson prayed, “Lord, you see the child’s need and you know the mother’s desire.” Monday morning in Georgia, the biopsy result was stage 1 cancer. Margaret went through the full chemo prescribed, then came home for many weeks of radiation at Travis AFB. After that she returned to Georgia and was discharged, she came home pronounced cancer free.

From 2001 until 2008 they had very little contact with Margaret, but she was living in Sacramento. In 2008 she contacted them about restoring their relationship. Now they have a very strong relationship. Over the years she’s had difficulty breathing. The beginning of this year she questioned the doctor and pushed to get some answers. Last week the doctor described her condition as “radiation sickness.” The radiation severely damaged her lungs and heart. She’s now facing open heart surgery in February to replace 2 valves, repair another valve, and maybe have 2 bypass procedures. Because of the scar tissue from the radiation, her risk of not surviving the surgery is almost double that of someone without that scar tissue. Needless to say, she’s very anxious. She is 45 years old and has 2 sons still at home. The youngest is not yet 18.

Last week Sister Leslie was praying and the Lord blessed her with a mustard seed faith for Margaret. She thanked the Lord for His plan and is waiting to see what God will to do. The Lord blessed with much hope and assurance that this is going to work for Margaret in many ways. God can do “exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think.” Sister Leslie received a text that said, “If you have a way to get in touch with Alabama – please let him know.” That meant she was asking for the saints to know of her condition so they’d pray. It was “exceeding abundantly above what she could think of her doing.”

Abraham believed in hope against hope. Sara was too old to get pregnant but Abraham believed God would give them a child. Are we willing to wait in hope for the most good to come from a situation? People around us are affected by what God does for one person. There are many parts in a car engine that all have to work together. Many pieces of our lives must come together. It’s hard to imagine how the pieces of God’s plan come together in our life and how long it will take.

Romans 4:18-21 Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that…spoken, So shall thy seed be. And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sara’s womb: He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God…fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform.

Yes, we have hard places to go through. Sometimes we’re troubled, cast down, confused, and don’t understand. God has a perfect plan. Are we willing to admit we need God’s help and can’t do it alone? Christ never denied those who came to him for help. He met each one who came to him with the compassion they needed.

Romans 8:24-25 For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.

Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Christ in you, the hope of seeing the glory of God’s working, in God’s time.

Matthew 28:20  and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.