Gary Almeida, Training Manager African Enterprise South Africa

I want you to think about a specific four-letter word that seems to be in short supply in the world today, and if we had more of it would change the circumstances of many, if not all of us. As you continue to take a swing at what that word might be, let me ease your mind by telling you it is not that four letter word we spell C A S H. It’s far greater than plain old cash. Still figuring out what it could be?

I don’t think it would be too presumptuous of me to say that each and every one of us can attest to the fact that 2023 came with its own set of challenges, and while those challenges don’t just miraculously disappear with the clock striking 00:00 and the sudden arrival of 2024, we have made it through into a new year because of the abundance of God’s mercy (5 letters), grace (5 letters) and we are now looking to 2024 with fresh eyes of faith (also 5 letters), for 2 Corinthians 5:7 reminds us, “we walk, by faith and not by sight.” Any idea what that four letter would be?

In the “Price of Preachers,” the world-renowned preacher, Charles Spurgeon said; “Hope itself is like a star – not to be seen in the sunshine of prosperity, and only to be discovered in the night of adversity.” As we go into 2024, let us be reminded of the source of our hope (there it is, those precious four letters). The source of our hope is a profound concept that is deeply rooted in our faith. It is not something that we conjure up ourselves or something that we can manufacture.  Our hope, the hope that is steadfast and unwavering, comes from God alone.

It is a divine gift, a grace that is bestowed upon us by our Heavenly Father. This is a fundamental truth that we must grasp to fully comprehend the power and significance of hope in our lives as we embark on the journey that will mark 2024.

The scriptures provide us with clear evidence of this. In Romans 15:13, Paul writes, “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” This verse explicitly tells us that God is the source of our hope. It is He who fills us with hope as we trust in Him. It is not something that we can generate on our own. It is a divine gift that is given to us as we place our trust in God.

Our hope propels us forward. It gives us the strength to persevere, the courage to press on, and the resilience to overcome. It is not a passive resignation to fate, but an active engagement with God’s promises and it is a powerful force that can transform our lives and the lives of those around us.

John Piper says this about hope; “Hope is a confident expectation and desire for something good in the future… Hope is power. Hope is strength. Hope is victory in the fight of faith.” What a beautiful encapsulation of the essence of the strength of our hope. It is not a passive, wishful thinking, but an active, confident expectation. It is a powerful force that propels us forward, gives us strength to endure, and secures our victory in the fight of faith as we face the coming challenges – whatever they may be of 2024.

Prayer Points

  • Pray for an abundance of hope to fill our lives and flood the continent of Africa.
  • Pray that the real Source of Hope will be made more widely known through our outreaches across the continent that are in place for 2024.
  • Pray for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit reigniting the fire of God.