A lot of people will have woken up this morning with their hopes filled as they opened the curtains and saw the gardens, roads and paths covered in white. I’ve heard the children playing outside whilst I’ve stayed under the covers with no intention to go outside today.
In two weeks time we will be opening presents on Christmas morning, what are you hoping to open?
Advent is about anticipation, about patience and about hope. Pope Francis says “Advent increases our hope, a hope which does not disappoint. The Lord does not let us down”. As Christians we have a tendency to focus on the Gospels and the New Testament, because that’s when the Church started. However, it is the Old Testament that is the basis for the hope we can have in God.
If you have ever been to a traditional 9 lessons and carols you will know that all of the first lessons are from the Old Testament, from the prophets who were messengers from God, messengers of good news, good news that gave the people of God hope. Hope that God was going to save his people, that he was going to send a saviour. The remainder of the lessons are from the Gospels showing how God fulfilled that promise.
That is why Advent increases our hope, our hope that God will fulfil his promises. This is not the same as hoping that it will snow, or hoping that we will get the present that we want. This is a hope that God will fulfil the many promises that He has made throughout the Bible. The hope in forgiveness, in eternal life, in everlasting love, in peace and so much more. In a world of darkness this hope brings us a flicker of life.
So this advent, what will your hope be in?
Challenge: Look up some of the promises of God throughout the Bible, choose one of these promises and spend some time reflecting on this promise and how it can be fulfilled in you
Prayer: Father God, we thank you that have fulfilled your promises, and we pray that this time of advent will be a time of hope for us all. Amen