This month our theme will be hope. The Christmas season is a time when we remember the birth of Jesus, who brings light to our dark world and hope for eternity.
What are you hoping for this year? An end to the virus? A restored relationship? A new job? Healing? A child? A friend? Marriage? Renewed faith? Economic prosperity for our country? Are you hoping to start something new? Finish with something old? We all have hopes and dreams. Hope is what keeps us moving forward and makes life worthwhile.
Sometimes our hopes are dashed. Sometimes our hopes change. Sometimes we receive something different and better than we hoped for.
Wherever you find yourself right now in regard to hope, here is my prayer for you today::
“I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe” Ephesians 1:18-19
The Sunday after Thanksgiving, my husband and I were in South Carolina visiting our daughter and son-in-law and our two granddaughters. We attended a Presbyterian Church where the pastor used the following verses from Isaiah as the theme for his sermon:
“Nevertheless, there will be no more gloom for those who were in distress. In the past he humbled the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but in the future he will honor Galilee of the nations, by the Way of the Sea, beyond the Jordan-The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned.” Isaiah 9:2-3
The prophet Isaiah was speaking to the people of Israel during a dark time. His words were to encourage them. There was hope. God had a plan. THIS DARKNESS WAS NOT MEANT TO LAST FOREVER.
His point — all of us are often in the darkness. Our darkness may be financial distress, relationship problems, poor health, or worry about a friend or family member. It may seem as if our nation is headed for self-destruction. It doesn’t matter what the darkness is, in these verses God has promised that THIS DARKNESS WILL NOT LAST FOREVER. He is still in control. Light is coming.
We are living in the “in-between” times — the time between the birth of Christ and His second coming. During Advent we are waiting to celebrate His birth; during our daily lives we are waiting for Him to come again. During all of our waiting, we must remember that THIS DARKNESS WILL NOT LAST FOREVER.
It was a good sermon. We need to celebrate the light of Christ Who has come and will come again. We need to know that even in the darkest of seasons, light is coming. Wait and rejoice because THIS DARKNESS WILL NOT LAST FOREVER.