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Advent Devotion: Hope

 

Hope is both a noun and a verb. Hope, as a noun, can mean a state of expectation of something good in the future that God gives. Hope, as a verb, can mean living like we mean it or believe it to the best of our abilities. Another way to understand hope is to hear, and put into practice, the phrase “waiting for”.

 

Which begs a question: “In a world that has a tough time waiting for anything, is it really a surprise that, for some people, the world might seem hopeless?

 

Hope seems to be more of an art, than something one acquires.

 

Hope can’t really be made by our own hands, but it can be received by them.

 

Thankfully, God is about the work of giving us hope. God gives us the practice, the spiritual discipline, if we may, of “waiting for”: waiting for Jesus, again whose birth we celebrate in a few short weeks’ time. And that is good.

 

I’m not sure one can diagram hope or build a replica of hope. It might be tempting to define hope so religiously, that hope loses it’s religious (by which I mean “the good connection made between two or more separate realities”) meaning. Yes, please, to that which will join us to God.

 

If we want to see hope, watch the face of a child as ice cream is spoken of, when it is purchased, and when it is served, to them.

Again, this year, we will hear the story St. Luke wrote two thousand years ago. Pay attention when you hear the words the angel of the Lord spoke to the shepherds: ”…to you is born this day in the City of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord.” Let us realize again, or for the first time, the word “you” really means “you.” Then we’ll begin to know what hope can be. Thanks be to God.
 

Pastor Rich Kramer