As the world seems to continue growing darker and fear continues to try to invade our hearts, minds and spirits, we need a little/lot of peace on Earth, joy, and HOPE.
Hope as defined by dictionary.com:
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. Isaiah 9:6 (NIV)
It is easy to feel hopeless or less hopeful than we normally would when life seems to block our view of the Jesus of Christmas (birth) and Easter (death and resurrection). Sometimes we focus on one based on the time of the year. In order to see the BIG picture though, we need to remember both.
Maybe this year has been less ideal than most. Our family dealt with death more close up than we had in a long time when my father-in-law passed away in August. One life ripples into so many others. Sometimes in ways we are not even aware of until much later. He was a husband, father, grandpa, brother, uncle, friend.....
I am finding comfort in remembering that God sent Jesus into this corrupted world to bring hope not just for then, but for now too. Jesus came as a baby. Innocent. He grew up. Made friends. Lost friends. When he lost one of his close friends to death:
Jesus wept. John 11:35
We don't cry alone. God did not intend the world to be this way. A world with pain and suffering. My heart hurts when I see my children hurt. How God must feel the pain of His children and want to step in with comfort. We, like our own children sometimes push us away, sometimes push Him away. To do it on our own. Too proud to acknowledge dependence on somebody else.
God sent Jesus to this world because the alternative is that we would live our time on this fallen sphere and then we die. God sent us Jesus so that we can live with the assurance that THIS? This is not all there is. He sent Jesus to experience what we experience. For when it hurts.
John 3:16-17: For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
1 Peter 1:3 (NIV)
Praise to God for a Living Hope
3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
If you are hurting right now more than normal? The following is my prayer for you. Make it your prayer too.
Ephesians1:17-19 I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. 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.
Amen and Amen!