Scripture Reading: 1 PETER 1:13-16

Set your hope fully on grace. This, Scripture tells us is how we prepare our minds for action. Focus and anticipate and hope in grace — not effi ciency or power or intelligence or even wisdom, but grace. Hope in grace runs counter to our culture obsessed with righteousness or winning, consumption or acquiring. What would it mean to set your hope fully on grace today?

Prayer: Gracious God, grace seems like a risky bet given the state of our hearts and the state of our world. Won’t those who hope in grace get exploited in the face of evil and sin? Besides, we take delight in seeing people get what we think should be coming to them. Help us to desire grace not only for ourselves, but for everyone. Show us again the unmatched, transformative power of your grace. Amen.

- Jill Duffield © 2020 Presbyterian Outlook

Scripture Reading: HEBREWS 11:1-3

Hebrews tells us that faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. As you begin the Advent season and reflect on the year, what are your fervent hopes for yourself, your community, church and the world? Write those hopes down, envision them and pray about them. Can you be convicted and assured of their coming to fruition, even if you do not yet see them?

Prayer: Gracious God, align our hopes with yours so that our dreams and visions participate in your good and certain future for all creation. Do not let our fear overtake our hope. Do not let us capitulate to lesser desires or false teachings. Grant us the faith to hope for nothing less than the redemption of the world that Jesus comes to bring. Give us the courage to participate in the new, good, life-giving thing, your near kingdom, present and coming. Amen.

- Jill Duffield © 2020 Presbyterian Outlook


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