An Advent Season Musing
As I write this post, we are heading into the Christmas season. Christmas 2020. What will it look like? Very likely, it will look different from the Christmases we are used to, from what we desire it to be. Based on all that 2020 has thrown at the world so far, who can say what might happen before we slam the door on this year and open the door to the next.
I think it is safe to say that the world is weary. Weary of 2020. Weary of the pandemic, lockdowns, masks, social distancing, work from home, separation from loved ones. Weary of hurricanes and wildfires. Weary of political unrest, election chaos, division, cancel culture, censorship. The list goes on and on.
And the world is weary.
Is the thrill of hope stirring in your heart, even so?
Is the weary world rejoicing?
I’m listening to my church service online right now and a woman is expressing that Jesus is our hope. The hope of the world. The thrill of hope! He is the light of the world. His light shines in darkness. He came to bring light to a people who sat in darkness.
Much of this year has been shrouded in darkness, hasn’t it? A dark cloud descending over everyone and every thing? Is it still possible to have hope in the midst of the darkness?
“This I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope.”
Jeremiah said the above words after he had been lamenting for 20 verses on all the woe that he had endured from the wrath of God for the sins of Jerusalem. God had made him walk in darkness and not in light. As he remembered all the bad things that were happening, his soul sank. But then, he remembered (called to mind, intentionally) the faithfulness of the LORD. That is what gave him hope again!
And, then… after a very long time…
God sent Jesus! The faithfulness of God came with tiny feet and hands and became the light of the world! The true light, that gives light to everyone coming into the world! The light that dispels darkness. The light that brings hope.
If we know the light of the world—Jesus—we have hope. But as Jeremiah’s soul sank within him as he remembered all the troubles, he had to purposely call the goodness of God to mind to restore his hope. So when the darkness—and the confusion and fear that lurk in the darkness—threaten to overwhelm, undo, and paralyze us, remember Jesus! Call Him to mind. Meditate on why He chose to put on flesh and walk among us, so He could live in us.
So, while the things we see and experience all around us are real, Jesus is no less real. In fact, He is more real! We must remind ourselves to rest in Him. To trust in Him. Because our human eyes tend to focus on what we see around us, and if we are not careful this will block our spiritual view of our Savior.
My prayer for this Christmas season is that those of us who hope in Christ will feel a renewed thrill of hope as we recall why He came into the world. To bring us His light. To bring us His peace. To shower us with His grace and forgiveness. To call us His friends. To love us. To save us. Immanuel—God with us. Forever.
Let us make it a point this season to share the thrill of hope with a weary world. Let’s end this year with a weary world rejoicing!
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