Summary: This is a message given on a Sunday morning speaking primarily to youth graduating from High School. The goal of the message is to provide hope for the future for all in the congregation.

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Happy are the Youth Whose Hope is in the Lord

Psalm 146:5 “Happy is the man/youth whose hope is in the Lord.”

For you that are older, do you remember how you felt when you graduated from High school? Did you experience excitement and hope for the future? Or did you feel hopeless about your future?

When I graduated from Sterling High School in Sterling, Kansas I didn’t have a lot of confidence about my future. I was more confused than self-assured about the future. I knew my next step was to attend Central Christian College of Kansas and take basic college courses. I was a young Christian, but as yet had not really yielded totally to God’s will for my life. I was searching but not really seriously thinking about the future. Growing up in a divided home where my mother was a Christian and my father was not a Christian so attending a Christian college helped me get grounded in my Faith.

God’s Word is Clear “Happy are the Youth whose hope is in the Lord.”

My prayer for youth and all of us here this morning that we will leave this worship service with a renewal of hope in our heart and life.

We all need a super blessing of hope in our life. Hope is what gets us through the darkest night. Hope is the belief that we are not permanently boxed in. Anything minus hope equals nothing.

To all youth I would suggest several conditions for you to embrace hope in your life.

Surrendering to God’s Will Gives You Hope

James 4:13-15 can be summarized this way, “Your tomorrows are wrapped up in complete surrender to God’s will.” “Now listen, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money. Why do you not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, ‘If it is the Lord’s will we will live and do this or that.”

God has promised to guide you step by step. Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight (or will direct your paths).”

You don’t have to be fearful about the future? Give your future to God. Live one day at a time completely surrendered to God’s will. God usually guides you one step at a time. You don’t get the entire book for your life where you can look at the ending chapter and know exactly what you will be doing. It’s like unrolling a scroll one event at a time. We do know and have the assurance that our life is in God’s hand and whatever happens we will have the victory and be with Jesus.

• God reveals His will as you trust and obey Him day by day. It’s like walking in the dark with a flashlight. As you walk forward the light reveals what is ahead for a short distance.

• God directs your steps much like a GPS, Global Positioning System. There are 24 satellites 11,000 miles up that connect to your GPS. You punch in your ending address and you are guided street by street and turn by turn. Dwayne Yount our Director of Outreach often goes with me and we punch in the address in his GPS and the signal guides us to our destination. Proverbs 16:9 says “We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.” (NLT)

God’s Word is your GPS for your life. Psalm 25:4-5

Without out a roadmap for life you wander aimlessly from one experience to another. Without talking the hand of Jesus and walking with him you stumble and fall and have no one to pick you up. With Jesus by your side you are constantly being picked up and encouraged to keep going to fulfill you God given mission in life. Because Jesus lives you can face tomorrow.

#A man approached a little league baseball player during a game one afternoon. He asked a boy in the dugout what the score was. The boy responded, “Eighteen to nothing---we’re behind.” “Boy,” said the spectator, “I’ll bet you’re discouraged.” “Why should I be discouraged?” replied the little boy. We haven’t even gotten up to bat yet!”

• Following God’s will is an adventure. Serving the Lord does not mean a pain free life or a life free of frustration but when you are in the will of God all is well with your soul and in spite of pain and challenges of life you find fulfillment and hope.

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