The holiday season is upon us with all of it's stress and craziness. I find my holiday seasons filled with blessing and chaos. The blessing takes place when I intentionally slow down and take time to really experience the season. Yes, you really can enjoy this time of year even if it is full of busyness and chaos. The experience comes from seeking and searching for God during all of your festivities. That is really what Advent means is to look for Jesus. We look at His birth and the promises fulfilled by God in the miraculous birth of His Son. Then we should look for Him also in our everyday lives, because He promises us that He is there. Then we should be in anticipation of His second Advent when He returns to set up His kingdom. I guarantee when we make Christ a participant in our everyday lives things don't seem as chaotic then. Jesus has that effect on us. Paul wrote about experience and how it brings hope to our lives in Romans;
5 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:
2 By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
3 And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;
4 And patience, experience; and experience, hope:
5 And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.
Paul explains to us that we are justified by faith and that we have made peace with God through faith. This faith also allows us to fully realize the grace that has been given to us and we should rejoice in hope of our relationship with Him. Hope is a powerful thing. Hope brings strength, perseverance, and stability during troubled times. Paul tells us that troubles develops patience, and that patience gives us experience. Through experiencing the grace of God in our lives we develop Hope. Hope in God. Hope in Christ. Hope in the Holy Spirit. Hope is a game changer. Too many people have lost hope and the holidays seem to make things worse for them.
Don't lose Hope my brothers and sisters. Just as God kept His promise with the birth of the Christ Child God will also keep His promises He has made for you. So I encourage you this ADVENT season, look for Jesus and rejoice in the Hope that He brings into our lives.