JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Jesus is the Hope of hope and his followers must be the salt of hopefulness in today’s society, Cornell Sudduth Sr., pastor of Second Baptist Church of Jefferson City, Mo., proclaimed.
Speaking to attendees at the Churchnet Annual Gathering, Sudduth reminded listeners that they cannot share hope unless they have the hope found in Jesus.
The Jefferson City pastor emphasized the meeting theme, “Share Hope: Building a Community of Peace & Reconciliation,” with Psalm 33:20-22. Substituting the word “hope” for “salt” in Matthew 5:13, he challenged attendees to be hope in the world.
Faith and hope are intimate, he said. The Christian walk is not just a walk of faith, but is also a walk of hope. If believers lose hope, how can they show hope to the world?
The Psalm passage points out that believers wait in hope for the Lord.
Hope in God shields Christians in, not from, the harm they face as they trust in the Lord. Though believers are saddened by the world’s condition, trust and hope comes from “knowing we win” in the end, he said.
Hope and trust are grounded in God’s unfailing, unending, all-powerful love. As God’s people put their hope in him, the Lord allows his love to rest on them, Sudduth said.
Hope will bring about peace. Believers must keep their eyes on the Lord and rely on him to bring peace.
Churchnet President Donna Potts also offered remarks in the April 25 worship service. She shared 10 Ways to Love from a National Day of Prayer observance. Believers should listen without interrupting (Proverbs 17:1), speak without accusing (James 1:19), give without sparing (Proverbs 21:26), pray without ceasing (Colossians 1:9) and answer without arguing (Proverbs 17:1).
To love others, believers must also share without pretending (Ephesians 4:15), enjoy without complaint (Philippians 2:14), trust without wavering (1 Corinthians 13:7), forgive without punishing (Colossians 3:13) and promise without forgetting to fulfill it (Proverbs 13:12).