Messengers of Hope

Jeremiah 29:11 tells us that God has a good plan for our lives – “to give us a future and a HOPE.”

God of Hope
God is “the God of Hope” and He wants to “fill you with all joy and peace in believing (through the experience of your faith) that by the power of the Holy Spirit you will abound in hope and overflow with confidence in His promises” (Rom 15:13). With God, it’s never too late to start believing, anticipating, hoping and expecting.

Power of Hope

What I find fascinating about Hannukah, the Jewish festival of lights celebrated at this time of the year, is the power of a hope-filled people. Zerubbabel, the Persian governor of occupied Judea, had laid the foundation and rebuilt the Temple of God in Jerusalem. Herod the Great, in his quest for personal aggrandisement, razed the Temple constructed by Zerubbabel to the ground and then rebuilt it to become one of the greatest religious edifices in the Roman Empire.

Sandwiched between these two grand construction projects came the Maccabean Revolt. What followed was a series of events leading to the desecration of the Jewish Temple. This led to the Maccabean Revolt resulting in the rededication of the Jewish Temple. It was a costly battle that was secured after much bloodshed. Still, a ragtag Jewish army prevailed against the mighty Greeks. God worked in conjunction with their persevering efforts.

The story of the Maccabees and its message of hope needs to be told. When the Maccabean leaders went about the process of purifying the Temple, they found a single cruse of oil with its seal still intact. It was here where they relit the Menorah, the great candelabrum in the Temple.

Miraculously the light lasted eight days and that became the central narrative of Hanukkah. It became a festival of light within the Jewish home symbolising the light of hope that could not be extinguished. It’s still observed to this very day. Its message was captured in a phrase from the prophet Zechariah, “Not by might nor by power but by My spirit, says the Lord Almighty” (Zech 4:6).  Never underestimate the power of hope!

Definition of Hope

One definition of “hope” is “a favourable and confident expectation.” Bill Johnson puts it this way – “Hope is the joyful anticipation of goodness, and this creates an atmosphere that attracts the promises of God.”

I believe many times we take a passive attitude where we adopt a “wait and see” type of attitude; hoping that God will make something happen. A better approach is to have a purposeful expectation where we anxiously anticipate God to move in accordance to His Word. He desires for us to actively anticipate  something good. So what are you expecting? Have you stopped expecting?

When a woman is pregnant, we say that she’s “expecting”. And the further along she is in the pregnancy, the more she anticipates the birthing that’s to come. Those who are mothers will share their excitement toward the end of the pregnancy. Each day she awakes with the expectation that “Today is going to be the day – it has to be the day!” It’s coming! 

This is exactly how God wants you to be with Him! He has an incredible plan for your life, and He wants you to anticipate that good things are right around the corner. You may say, “people and circumstances may have been this way for a long time.” Hope says, “God is the God of the impossible, and things can change.” Start expecting again.

How would you assess the year 2017 as it comes to a close? Has there been pain and disappointment resulting in a resignation that things will not improve in 2018? Don’t give into the lies of the enemy. It’s in his interest to discourage and convince you that things will not get better. We serve a God of Hope, a God of New Beginnings and a God of Second Chances. God wants to fill you with overflowing hope! 

Messengers of Hope

Dr Bailey shared in June 1, 2008, how he had a vision of a beautiful lake in Heaven and by this lake, there was a bed of daffodils. He asked his heavenly escort what this represented and was told that this field in heaven was planted by Cornerstone. 

Now the daffodil is also known as the “resurrection flower” and is the symbol of the American Cancer Society. It’s a symbol of hope and what God seeks to do is to implant in the hearts and minds of those in Cornerstone, the emblem of hope. He wants to give us authority over cancer. He wants us to be His messengers of hope, to impart hope to others. 

Hope is to the heart what seeds are to the earth. Let’s start sowing and spreading the Good News during this festive season!
 

Pastor Timothy Chong

Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem

The 6th of December 2017 will go down in history as that day when Jerusalem was once again recognised as the capital city of Israel as it was in the days of King David. It was in Jerusalem where King David sought in his heart to build God a house. The temple was completed by King Solomon in seven years, 480 years after Israel came out of Egypt. God calls Jerusalem, “the city which I have chosen for Myself, to put My name there” (1 Kings 11:36b). Jesus Himself will return and stand on the Mount of Olives which faces Jerusalem on the east. Are we approaching the days spoken of by the prophet Zechariah?

President Donald Trump sent the nations reeling when he announced that Jerusalem will be recognised as the capital of the State of read more…

A Family Affair

One does not have to look too hard in Scripture to find the value that God places upon the family. The last few verses of the Old Testament speaks of the restoring of relationships among fathers to the children. The close of the Church Age features the Lord as the Bridegroom being joined with His Bride (Church).

It’s in satan’s interest to divide and conquer through any means possible so as to thwart the purposes of God. It’s true; a house divided will not stand. How does Cornerstone measure up when examined as a family? Do we appropriate the Biblical values of family within the church and the overall Body of Christ? Perhaps two recent events will help to bring perspective to this important subject.

The recently-concluded FOPx meetings featured a gathering of read more…

A Bumper Year

This year was certainly a bumper year for conferences in Cornerstone. Apart from our flagship Kingdom Invasion Conference in March, we also had the hugely-successful Kingdom Wealth Conference, our CORE Media Conference, and most recently, our FOPx Conference. And finally in December, we’ll be hosting our first Kingdom Invasion Kids Conference. The buy-in and support has been nothing short of phenomenal.

We’re closing our registrations for KI Kids because we’ve maxed out. Our CORE Conference saw more than double what we had estimated earlier and FOPx, which Cornerstone is leading charge of, is becoming the go-to conference for young people in the nation. Over 83 youth ministries participated. This is in addition to our Family Church Camp, which is a big event, our Leaders Advance and the many cluster retreats. So yeah, this has been a read more…

Time to Go Forth!

As the school holiday season approaches, we’re expecting many of our church members and families to be travelling overseas for well-deserved year-end holidays or mission trips. Pastor Yang often said that we measure a church’s strength, not by its seating capacity but by its sending capacity. From now until the end of the year, there’ll be a sending forth of 24 Courier teams comprising 234 Cornerstonians to the mission fields in 7 different countries. This is a season “when kings go off to war” (1 Sam 11:1).

Encounter God’s Heart 

Our God is big and He cares about the nations. He’s a global God and His ultimate goal is to gather a family that represents “every tribe and tongue and people and nation” (Rev 5:9). When you step into a foreign mission field, you’ll sense God’s amazing compassion for another culture read more…

Reflections from the Golden State

A small team of us have just returned from a trip to the US in the golden state of California. What an amazing trip it was! Definitely worth the long hours in the plane and feeling jet-lagged. We were there to attend a conference at Bethel Church in Redding at the invitation of Pastor Bill Johnson. Whilst there, we also managed to take some time out to meet with some key leaders and visited some of the most iconic companies in the Silicon Valley. Allow me to share two of my personal reflections from the trip:

#WhatMadeBethelSpecial?

There was a sense of excitement in me as the car approached the foot of the hill, having heard much about Bethel Church and finally being there in person. Driving up the slope reminded me of Psalm 24:3-5, which read more…

Who’s Not An Imposter?

Is there anyone good at being an imposter? Putting forward an image that you really are not or filling up a position that you know you’re not qualified for. Maybe we’re being a little too harsh on ourselves, but if we’ve ever struggled with a less-than-qualified psyche, then you’ll know what I’m talking about.

I’ve a little confession to make. Last week I spoke passionately about raising kids. I share different things that we need to pass on to our children and how we can do those things. At the end of the services on Sunday, I went home and over a small matter, blew up at one of my boys. I’ll spare you the trivial details because it was trivial. The blow up was epic though. The end result, I felt horrid. I felt unqualified, hollow, read more…

A Mustard Seed Grown

It’s amazing how when I look back at some of the most significant things that have taken place in my life, that it always begins with a “mustard seed”. In fact, at the time when these “mustard seed moments” occur, they seem almost coincidental and so easy to miss. This last week, we were in Islamabad, Pakistan where we did our Kingdom Invasion Conference. We had an absolutely amazing time and we all felt the significance of the event in releasing something afresh in the nation of Pakistan. Yet when I think back to how it all started, I see random events. I see “mustard seed moments” where we couldn’t have anticipated what it would result in today.

It was about 12 years ago, when we had a small team go up to Chiang Mai in read more…

A Sign and Wonder in Our Midst (Part 2)

If you’ve not read Pastor Lip’s write-up last weekend (13 Oct 2017 – https://www.cscc.org.sg/pastors-blog/a-sign-and-wonder-in-our-midst), I want to encourage you to have a read. It’s liberating and very apt especially for the times we’re living in. Towards the end of his article, he gave some solid biblical life values which when applied in your life, will not only bless you, but also positively change your marriage and children.

Riding on that write-up, I want to give you another side of Pastor Andrew Yeo which many don’t get to see, much like a “behind-the-scenes” peek into his life. While we now know of the many achievements and great exploits which God has accomplished through him, I’m also privileged to see the transforming power of God’s Word manifested through a surrendered life. This will answer some of your queries like, read more…

A Sign and Wonder in Our Midst

What a great sigh of relief! The PSLE examinations are over! Or is it? The next stressful phase is waiting for the results to come out and vying to get our kids into the best schools they qualify for. All-in-all, as believers, it’s time for us to get over this and not prescribe any more to a devaluation of our lives by letting ourselves be ruled by the tyranny of a 3-digit number.

Firstly, I’m not here to criticise the system. As far as I know, there are no perfect systems. The simple reason is that God made every child unique and systems simply can never be versatile enough to accommodate the uniqueness of each child. Nonetheless, we only have ourselves to blame if we permit any system to dictate our lives and future instead of making read more…

The Grain, The Wine & The Oil

We’re in the most important month of the Jewish calendar. After celebrating the Jewish New Year (Rosh Hashanah) and the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur), we celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot) this week. The Feast of Tabernacles was celebrated at the dedication of the Temple of Solomon (1 Kgs 8:2), in the Restoration Period (Neh 8), and the Gospels record that our Lord Jesus not only celebrated the festival, He took traditional elements of the celebration and applied them to His own life and mission (Jn 7 & 8). It will be the principle feast of the Millennial Reign of Christ upon earth. It’ll also have a fulfilment in the last day Church. The Church will spiritually experience the Feast of Tabernacles.

The name “tabernacles” comes from the Hebrew word “sukkah”, which means “a booth or tent.” This read more…

Walking in the Reality of Faith

I had a very inspiring lunch meeting with a church member this week. We were sharing testimony after testimony of our “faith adventures”, the “hits and misses”. I thought to myself – all fellowship should be like this! We didn’t even realise two hours had passed. His bedtime Bible-reading to his children comprises not just stories from the Bible, but real-life testimonies of God’s goodness and supernatural guidance over his life. Such is the environment of faith his children grew up in.

Testimonies are powerful! They testify of your “acts of faith” in God, of courage and exploits with God, and the trust you’ve placed in Him. It’s faith in action. There are no significant or insignificant testimonies. Any testimony that has faith in it, pleases God (Heb 11:6) and is a powerful weapon in overcoming the read more…

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