Eternal Hope


Post Christmas check-in.

How are you doing? Are you rested and recovered from the blur of last-minute preparations? 

December 24, 7:00 pm

There is excitement in the air! Lights are twinkling, carols are playing, gifts are waiting. All is merry and bright.

December 25, 7:00 pm

Christmas is over. I ate too much. Tomorrow we have to clean up the mess, return and exchange gifts, and put all the decorations away. And where on earth is that gift for Uncle Joe that never arrived in the mail?

🎄🎄🎄

Beyond the Manger

The week before Christmas, my husband and I began watching The Chosen. (If you have not discovered this new series about the life and ministry of Jesus, be sure to check it out.)

Two days after Christmas, we discovered a special episode about Jesus’ birth. After watching it, I began thinking about the day after Jesus was born. What happened that day? The Bible doesn’t say specifically, but most likely, Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus left the stable to pay their taxes. And the manger went back to being a feeding trough for the animals. Imagine that.

For one night, that manger became a humble bed for our Savior, yet over 2,000 years later, it still fills us with hope. So, as you begin packing away your decorations this week, and Christmas 2020 becomes a distant memory, remember that Immanuel — God with us — remains forever.

Everlasting Light

Picture yourself in the darkest place you could ever imagine. Your eyes are wide open, but you cannot see a thing. You are afraid to move forward or in any direction for fear of falling or stepping into danger. Your senses are heightened, and every sound is amplified, even your own heartbeat.

Have you ever been in that place?

When Darkness Flees

Whether it’s a physical or emotional space, darkness can feel overwhelming. It holds you captive in one place.

But there is hope . . .

Suddenly, in the midst of that darkness, you hear a soft and gentle whisper.

“Do not be afraid. I am here with you. You are never alone, and I will guide your steps into the light. In me, there there can be no darkness at all.”

It is the still, small voice of Jesus. His assurance floods over you with warmth, helping you to move forward in the darkness, out of doubt and despair. I am not alone. I can do this.

The darkness may still remain, but His guidance gives you hope and the courage to take a step. And then another. And still another, until you step from the shadows, directly into the Light.

It is glorious!

The Message of Christmas

We all wander in the darkness at some point in life. Christmastime is supposed to be the season of hope, peace, joy and love. But for many, it is the darkest time of the year, and sometimes brings feelings of sadness and deep loneliness. We remember those we have lost. We relive painful memories from the past and yearn for happier times. It can be difficult to see beyond those dark places.

But dare to take that first step! Listen for the soft and gentle voice, and trust that you can move forward and into the light. It is safe, and warm and abiding.

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I attended a beautiful Christmas concert this past week. One of the worship leaders shared the message that Jesus — the Light of the World — came to earth during the darkest time of the year. That is no coincidence!

Jesus brought light and hope into a dark and weary world. His light is eternal and always with us, not just at Christmas, but the whole year through.

I wish you a Merry Christmas and Happy Chanukah — full of light, and overflowing with hope, joy and abundant blessings. May the peace of Christ fill your heart and home with His everlasting light!