Saturday, April 25, 2015

Gifts of Hope

There is much excitement and anticipation in the days leading up to and the weekend of the MS 150.  It is humbling to know that there are so many people who ride for me each year, from teenagers to people approaching 70.  For some this will be their first time while others have ridden for several years.  Participants have trained and raised funds.  Now they willingly ride, exert effort, and endure sore bodies for people who are not able to do so yet.  Along with the riders, there are thousands of volunteers, family members, and friends, who offer encouraging words, repair bikes, give water and snacks, and wait for the participants at the Finish Line.  Their efforts offer hope for a cure for MS in the not too distant future.

Larry and I will soon be making a trip to Mexico for another round of stem cell therapy through Celltex.  Like the treatments in Houston, I will have the IVs of stem cells infused in the arm.  In addition, I will have treatments in the spine and lymph nodes.  Other patients with MS have responded positively with this protocol.  It has been almost three years since my last treatment.  I have hope that another series will once again offer me improved health and quality of life.

But my major gift of hope isn’t dependent on money, research, long bike rides, or treatments.  I am a child of God because of my trust, faith, and acceptance of Jesus as my Lord and Savior.   The Bible offers words of hope and encouragement.  Because of God’s love, faithfulness, and care, I have the gift of hope all day long, every day of the year.  And what a great gift to share with others.

Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.
Psalm 25:5

Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the Lord.
Psalm 31:24

May your unfailing love be with us, Lord, even as we put our hope in you.
Psalm 33:22

For you have been my hope, Sovereign Lord, my confidence since my youth.
Psalm 71:5

But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
Isaiah 40:31

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.
Jeremiah 29:11

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.
Romans 12:12

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.
Romans 15:4

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.
Romans 15:13

But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,
I Peter 3:15 

Remember your word to your servant,
    for you have given me hope.
My comfort in my suffering is this:
    Your promise preserves my life.
Psalm 119:49-50

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