Revelation 19:6 -The Lord God omnipotent reigneth.

Handel's Messiah is part of Christmas for many people. People may not know the whole oratorio, but they know the Hallelujah Chorus, and want to hear that. Problem is, it's not near the beginning, it's near the end. People, whose ears were raised on rock 'n' roll, have trouble getting all the way through two CD's or cassettes to the end.

Isn't that the way with life… most people go for the quick fix that doesn't last. It's a truism that anything lasting or worthwhile in life will require lots of hard slugging first, then the payoff. Like study. Do an all-night cram, and you might get through the exam, but you don't know the material, like someone does who studied from the first. Or fitness. Fad or crash diets don't work. You have to say "yes" to salads, and ride your bike every day, or you're not going to make any lasting changes in your life or your closet.

In this microwave age, you might be tempted to throw up your hands. But help is on the way. This is Advent. We need some help; we need some hope. And we have that, because of the fact that the Godhead walked the earth and left footprints. Read the scriptures and you will see that by turns, Jesus was tired, hungry, and so moved by the death of a friend that He broke down in tears. We worship a God who knows all about being human. We have help and hope in all our decisions, in all our days of this life, and for eternity.

We do have help and hope, so let us rejoice. "Hallelujah, the Lord God omnipotent reigneth," indeed. Even if your ears were raised on rock 'n' roll, you can learn to love the #1 hit of 1742, and enjoy Handel's Messiah from the first note to the last "Amen". I do.

Prayer: Lord, sometimes we find it tough to go the distance. We want the shortcut and the instant answer. Help us remember that because of your coming at Christmas time, we have help in all our hard tasks, and hope for all eternity. Amen.

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Bruce M. Dinsmore <>
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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