I love helping folks out by promoting their books when they have a blog tour. Except I get tired of reading the same old reviews over and over... so, as many of you know, I like to switch things up a bit. Which leads to this week's Thursday Thirteen.
Amy's book deals with a lot of issues, but I think one of the larger themes is finding hope in dark circumstances. In her discussion questions, she asks the following question(s). Clint and Sara struggled to believe God's promises when life gave them a multitude of reasons to stop hoping. How do you stay open to hope and to God?
And so, in proper Thursday Thirteen form, I'm sharing thirteen reasons found in Healing Promises to keep hoping.
1. God is in us. 1 John 4:15-16 "If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God. 16 And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him."
2. God helps us overcome. 1 John 4:4, 5:4 "You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world." "for everyone born of God overcomes the world"
3. God has great plans for us. Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
4. We can rest in God's hope. Psalm 62:5 "Find rest, O my soul, in God alone;
my hope comes from him."
5. God's plan, even if we don't understand it at the time, works toward His purpose. Romans 8:28 "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."
6. God doesn't promise to end our suffering, but to use it for our good. Romans 5:3-5 "Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us."
7. We need to bless the Lord regardless of our circumstances. Job 1:21 ""Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked I will depart. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised."
8. We need to learn to stop depending on people and circumstances. Those change, while the Lord remains constant.
9. Because God is with us, we have nothing to fear. Isaiah 41:10 "So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand."
10. God has already won the battles we fight. John 16:33 ""I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.""
11. The Lord is our protector. Psalm 18:2 "The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold."
12. For those who know the Lord, death is not final. 1 Thessalonians 4:13-15 "Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. 14We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. 15According to the Lord's own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep."
13. Finally, the love of the Lord never fails. Amy talks about 1 Corinthians 13:8, but I'll let you look that up if you want. Instead, I'm going to share the verse that most strongly shows this for me. Jeremiah 31:3 ""I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness."
No matter what circumstances you're in, or how dark the world appears, just as the characters in Healing Promises learned, God's love overcomes all. He is our strength and will carry us through.
To learn more about this incredible book, visit Amy's website, Heart Chocolate, for sample chapters, a great newsletter, and other information.
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