Hope Unwrapped

Sunday, November 27, 2022
Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "O Come O Come Emmanuel"1 (Lyrics)

Today is the beginning of Advent, which is a preparation for our Christmas season. In many churches, candles will be lit to celebrate different themes: hope, love, joy, and peace. Today, my mind went to the hope that we have as Christians.

One of the technological wonders that we enjoy these days is FaceTime, an app on some smartphones. It enables us to talk to people face-to-face. Happy faces crowd the screen telling of the newest game or toy that they have. Even a tour through a cleaned bedroom could be on the agenda. At the bottom of the screen is a little symbol that turns the camera in the opposite direction. Many times, little fingers have interrupted my struggling, saying, "This button, Grandma." Indeed, the camera was focused outward. Oh, it was wonderful for viewing new Christmas decorations, an updated view of Illinois weather, including snowdrifts, or the ten-foot-tall corn outside our door — an amazing thing to say the least.

What we focus on is important. Sometimes, we Christians can direct too much focus on the world outside, with its sin that steals and destroys lives. Unfortunately, if we tarry there too long, it can change our whole perspective on life. We turn the camera of our eyes to the hopelessness of the world, which can lead to a joyless heart, instead of to the hope of God. We can forget the promises that are ours who believe on the Lord Jesus. The world does not give us hope, but usually just the opposite. I love this verse:

Psalm 42:11 – Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God. (NIV)

My favourite verse on hope has sustained our family through difficult times:

Romans 15:13 – May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (NIV)

Jesus Himself told us that we would have trouble in this life, but by no means should we live in hopelessness. He is our hope!

As hearts hope this Christmas for all kinds of things, including peace on earth and no more hurt or sorrow, may we all be filled with the joy that only hope in Jesus brings!

Prayer: Heavenly Father, as this beautiful Christmas season begins, may we never forget our Saviour, Your Son Jesus Christ. That night, hope was laid in a manger, so may we sing with the angels, "Glory to God in the highest heaven." Amen.

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About the author:

Jeanie Nihiser <jnihiserj@gmail.com>
Cerro Gordo, Illinois, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks for the encouraging words, Jeanie.

    Many thanks…right words at the right time… really help.

    Thank you for sharing this encouraging devotional with us. Blessings.

    Welcome to Presbycan, Jeanie! This is a lovely and encouraging message.

    A lovely, encouraging message this morning, Jeanie. Thank you. Blessings to you and yours.

    Merci Jennie for the insights. You see the “ten-foot-tall corn outside our door,” do you also hear the corn growing?

    Thank you, Jeannie, for a lovely expansion of our HOPE, this first Sunday of Advent. We hope you will write again.

    Thank you, Jeanie. Yes! Hope! I am in a sorrowful place, but there is JOY with Jesus!
    (BC Canada)

    Unable to attend church this first Sunday in Advent, the hymn o Come Emmanuel brought tears – my husband now deceased sang this as a solo every Advent – Hope is in the scripture and in music inspired by God.

    Jeanie, thank you for these reminders to remember the hope God planted within our hearts when we first believed. I just decorated our home yesterday with various nativity symbols to help recall the joyful facts of God’s plan revealed in the Messiah’s birth.

    Greetings Jeanie and many thanks for the words of encouragement in your devotional today. Advent truly is a beautiful time to enjoy and take to heart each event as we progress to the arrival day of that tiny babe in a manger who becomes our loving Lord. Blessings for preparing this special message of Hope.

    Dear Jeanie,
    Thank you for today’s devotional as we begin the season of Advent. Hope is so essential! Thank you for your wise and inspiring words. I hope you will continue to write devotionals as time goes on.
    May God bless you in your ministry of writing.
    With Advent blessings.

    Jeanie, thank you for your hope-filled devotional and the reminder to focus on our Hope who is our Saviour Jesus Christ.
    May the Lord bless you and your family this Christmas season.

    Hi Jeanie, Thanks for the awesome Devotional today. It was just what we need as we start the advent season . We lit the first candle today at our Church. Reminding us that our Hope is in Jesus.
    Again, I loved your Devotional . Thanks for sharing it with us.
    (Ontario Canada)

    Thank you all for your kind words! May God bless you as you celebrate our Lord’s birth! Hope was unwrapped that blessed Christmas night!

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