HOPE- 1st Sunday in Advent 2018

Hope, Peace, Joy, Love. These are the typical four focus points of Advent, the coming of Jesus Christ the Messiah, the Incarnation of God into our world, fully God, fully human appearing as a newborn, vulnerable child. His Name? “Emmanuel” which means “God with us”.

So each of the four Sundays in Advent we consider those four issues.

As I discovered so many years ago, hope came the moment I began to come alive spiritually, when faith sparked as the Lord made Himself so very real to me -hope began to flow up in my heart like a spring bursting out of dry ground.

When I consider hope I often recall sick and addicted days when what I believe to be a quite accurate scriptural text from Paul writing to the church at Ephesus produced a full-on snapshot of my life:

“…remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world.” (Ephesians 2.12) I do remember… all too well. What I also remember, experience now and have for most of my lifetime is that hope only came as I began to trust and obey the Risen Christ.

Peter wrote something I meditate on as well (the caps. are my accented points to ponder).

1 Peter chapter 1.

v3 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,
 
v4 and into an INHERITANCE
 
that can NEVER PERISH,
 
SPOIL
 
OR FADE.
 
This INHERITANCE
 
is KEPT
 
in heaven
 
for YOU,
 
v5 who THROUGH FAITH
 
are SHIELDED
 
by GOD’S power
 
UNTIL the coming of the SALVATION
 
that is READY to be revealed
 
IN the last TIME.

 

May you trust and follow Jesus this Christmas and forever!

As always, thanks for stopping by. -Glenn

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2 thoughts on “HOPE- 1st Sunday in Advent 2018

  1. Thanks for sharing that Glenn. I find this a really challenging time of the year, because as much I am glad that “for unto us a Child is born” I am deeply saddened by the fact that because of my sin a pure sacrifice (in the form of an innocent baby) had to be sent. Don’t get me wrong, I will always and eternally be grateful that the sacrifice was made.
    I am just frustrated that so many believers are all over the redemption side of the season, but gloss over the true cost. People want to fall back on well it was Adam’s sin not mine. Jeff

    1. I hear you Jeff. Well, i think we do ourselve no good by extreme lashing of ourselves re. our sins (and indeed, sins, not merely mistakes…) on the one hand, and on the other extreme is triumpalism/victory-is-ours-full-stop stuff of which you speak. We look for an out to our daily responsibility. So sure, the warm fuzzies of Christmas and sometimes of believers who seek a cotton-candy rather than deep faith/cross-bearing reality in daily walk with the Lord… and it’s always been like that amonst we Christians regardless of the local church, no? Balance us Lord, to rejoice in Your grace and repent, truly follow as a result, to consider both your sacrifice and not shirk from our own in daily life on the planet!! -Glenn

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