You came back! Thanks for joining us for Day 8 of these Advent devotionals on HOPE.
People know that my husband died of COVID this year. They seem to walk on tiptoe around me, expecting me to take the role of grieving widow when in reality, most days I am fine. Yes, I have down times when I am overcome with tears, but I can hardly mourn when I know Gene is safe in Heaven with the Lord he served. And I will see him again!
Sometimes we think that Jesus was always upbeat, that he never grieved or felt despondent. Yet we remember he wept at the tomb of his friend Lazarus. We know he mourned as he looked out over the city of Jerusalem and yearned for all to come to him for salvation. Still, even in the depths of pain on the cross, Jesus had hope.
In Ps. 16:9,10 (and quoted again in Acts 2), we see Jesus had hope in the resurrection before he ever came to earth. Psalm 16 was written hundreds of years before Jesus arrived as a baby in a stable at Bethlehem. The psalm says, “Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoices: my flesh also shall rest in hope. For you will not leave my soul in hell; neither will you suffer your Holy One to see decay.”
If Jesus relied on hope to see him through hard times, how much more must we need it! Jesus gave us permission to grieve, as I do this year after losing Gene, but scriptures also give us reason to hope. Why not read all of Psalm 16 today and make a list of the things therein that gave the psalmist reasons to hope? Can you celebrate those reasons this Christmas?