Christmas is coming, and it isn’t called the most wonderful time of the year for no reason! In addition to seeing loved ones, giving and receiving gifts, and the decorations strung up around homes and through town, Christmas is a time to celebrate the coming of the Messiah. Each Sunday leading up to Christmas Day, we light a candle in church as we grow nearer to the celebration of Jesus’ birth. The first candle is the candle of hope.
Isaiah 9:6-7 says, “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the greatness of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this.”
Each Sunday when we light the Advent candles, I am reminded again of the hope, love, and peace we experience because of Jesus. What a beautiful gift the world received when the long-awaited Messiah was born! Without the hope of Jesus, we would not have hope for help to overcome, for strength, or for eternity. As one of my favorite Christmas songs says, “A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.”
As this Christmas season approaches, I hope that you feel the thrill of hope. This weary world is not all that we want it to be, but because of Jesus, we know that all things will be made new, and we have a home with Him in eternity. I hope you consider your great need for a Savior and rejoice in knowing that, though we may often feel as the Israelites did in Isaiah waiting for the prophesied Messiah, He will one day return.
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