This past Sunday marked the beginning of Advent, a season of preparing our hearts for the Christmas holiday. I remember thinking as a little girl, “why aren’t we lighting all the candles at once?” It wasn’t until I was an adult that I realized the themes for each week, and how they quietly prepared me to truly worship and give thanks for the season.
The Advent season begins with hope, which I find just so appropriate for this time of year. Hope was my theme for the year this year, and I’m learning what it truly means. I used to think it was all about faith, and being sure of what we do not see. However, I’m learning that hope is more than that. It’s this deep–seated belief that sits on expectation. We are expecting something great. We are waiting on it with anticipation!
Every Christmas we celebrate the hope that we have in Christ. We have been told He is returning, and we eagerly await with expectation. We have been told by the prophets in the Old Testament:
“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.
7 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.” – Isaiah 9:6-7
If we are followers of Christ, we believe this, and we have the expectation that it will happen. We have hope.
Today, read through the verses as if it were the first time you are reading them. What excites you the most? What do you struggle with believing some days? Spend some time in prayer to continue to have hope in this season.
Have more time? Want to go deeper?
- What does hope mean to you? Spend some time journaling about it. Look up some definitions of the word, and see if anything new sticks out to you.
- Where do you need to have more hope this Christmas season? Think on it, and confess to the Lord if needed.