I thought and prayed a long time before deciding to write an Advent series again this Christmas season. You may know my husband David passed from this world to his eternal home on September 21st – just weeks ago. As I write, the grief is still fresh. It’s surreal. I keep thinking he’s going to call asking what’s for dinner…or if we could go to dinner. (We talked a lot about dinner!)
At the same time, I’ve been thinking a lot about hope these past several weeks.
“And now, dear brothers, I want you to know what happens to a Christian when he dies so that when it happens, you will not be full of sorrow, as those are who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and then came back to life again, we can also believe that when Jesus returns, God will bring back with him all the Christians who have died.” (1 Thessalonians 4:13-14)
It may seem strange to start Advent with a passage like this one. But Jesus’ very existence brings us hope. He came. And even I….even now….I can have hope.
It’s a gift to have this reminder. But it’s also a charge.
We have been entrusted with this message of hope. A message the world needs desperately today. It’s not a message saying all our troubles will disappear. It’s better than that.
There’s hope in the middle of our struggles and pain. In the midst of all the world’s trouble, we can have hope because Jesus came. He came so that one day – like my husband – we can live in Glory with him. And by following Jesus, we are better at living this life now.
During Advent season, Christians around the world anticipate celebrating the birth of Jesus. His life and story are the reason we in the Institute empower storytellers of hope. Because the world’s greatest story deserves the best storytellers.
We have a story the world needs to hear. More than ever. A story that reminds me we live with hope. Are you ready to tell it?
Stories set to music speak profoundly to me. I’ll share a few of my favorites with you this Advent season. Perhaps they’ll inspire you to listen to some of your own and, as you do, experience renewed hope as you anticipate Christmas. For another take on the Hope of Christmas, listen to this song of hope by Matthew West.
Wishing you hope – a whole new kind of hope – this Christmas.
Do you want your family to be prepared to share the message of the Hope of Christmas? Check out how we’re getting storytellers ready to speak at the Institute for Cultural Communicators.
Dr. Teresa Moon, founding President and CEO of the Institute for Cultural Communicators, is an internationally-recognized seminar speaker, education consultant, author, and leadership coach. Each year, she travels globally equipping students, teachers, and parents to become “cultural communicators,” transforming ordinary students into extraordinary communicators and authentic leaders.