Hope Motivates and Directs Our Lives (Mon. Jan 4)

The word of the day is “faith.”  In today’s reading of Hebrews 11:17-23, 27-31, we see the power of faith to bring our hope near to us so that it informs and shapes our lives.   In the preceding verse, we find that Paul speaks of the hope for a “better, that is, a heavenly country… a city prepared for the faithful (vs. Hebrews 11:16).  All the examples of faith that follow are instances that depend on and move that hope closer to its realization. Faith Moves Hope Forward For example, Abraham’s sacrifice of Isaac (vs. 17)  looked forward to the sacrifices of God’s only Son.  The blessing of Jacob and Isaac concerned the “things to come’ (20).  The blessing of…

A Better and Heavenly Country (Fri., Jan.1)

Blessed Feast! The word of the day is “country.”  As we begin a new secular year, hardly anyone of us would like to go back to the difficulties of the past year.  We cling to the hope of a better year ahead.  This is in keeping with our reading of Hebrews 11:8, 11-16.   The apostle writes about those who spend their entire lives in hope. He says, “but now they desire a better, that is, a heavenly country. Therefore, God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them (vs. 16). Our reading begins with Abraham’s call to leave his homeland “to go out to the place where he would receive his inheritance”…