12/05/2017

Stacey Crawford

 

I absolutely love Christmas time. It is one of my favorite times of the year. But here is something I also know to be true, that not everyone enjoys Christmas like I do. For some, this time of year can be overwhelming, frustrating, or even sad. Just because “it’s the most wonderful time of the year” doesn’t necessarily make it feel that way. For some, it is looking around the table and realizing this is the first year one of your loved ones won’t be there. For others, it can bring heartbreak because there is a relationship in their lives that needs restoration but it hasn’t happened yet. Still for others, it could be an unmet desire that this season makes worse. There are so many things we can list that can cause us to almost dread this season.

 

I remember one particular Christmas for me when I was feeling hopeless. I had experienced the loss of a pregnancy, and was desperately praying for God to fulfill His promise to me that I would have a child. But there I was…not pregnant, no child, and just feeling hopeless. Even I, someone who loves Christmas, had a year when I honestly just wanted to get through. I wanted to have hope, I wanted to enjoy Christmas, but it felt like something was missing. I hated watching all of these happy families enjoying their Christmas. For me, it hurt. It was painful because something I had a great desire for wasn’t there.

 

But through that season, God reminded me that I have a different kind of hope. He brought me to the stories in the Bible of individuals who also were given promises, but had to wait for those promises to come. If you really look into it, the people of God had to wait 500 years for the Messiah. They were told that He was indeed coming, but had no idea it would take that long. Yet they still hoped. They knew that there was a faithful God who is always true to His word and who always keeps His promises. And that is what we cling to, especially at Christmas. God is near, He is with us, and He alone is where our hope lies. That precious Child who was born on Christmas is exactly where our hope is. Because of Him, we are forgiven, we are saved, we are redeemed. We are nothing without Jesus.

 

So my friends, if you find yourself dreading the holidays or are simply feeling down in this season, may you constantly be reminded of where our hope lies. Our hope comes from Christ Jesus, who came to save us, forgive us, redeem us, and someday will welcome believers into Heaven. Keep your eyes always focused on Jesus, and remember He is where true hope is. Praying that you find hope in Jesus throughout this season.

God also bound himself with an oath, so that those who received the promise

could be perfectly sure that he would never change his mind.

So God has given both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable

because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge

can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us.

Hebrews 6:17-18 NLT