Advent 2020 – Day 15

Returning to learn another reward of HOPE? Read on!

When I was a child, our family had a summer home by a lake in New England. Violent electrical storms would sometimes whip up waves on the lake and strike trees along the shore. On those evenings, my parents would turn on our kerosene lamps and gather us children on the porch of our home. There, snuggled under quilts and watching the lightning play on the water, I felt secure. With my parents’ arms around me, I sensed their love and protection.

When we know God’s forgiveness and have hope for the future, we not only have new confidence (see yesterday’s post), but we are able to experience God’s incredible love that surrounds us. In Psalm 33, the psalmist gives a long list of things God does for those “who hope for his lovingkindness.” These blessings include delivering us from death, keeping us safe from famine, being our help and shield, and giving us joy. But the psalm concludes by saying, “Let your unfailing love surround us, Lord, for our hope is in you alone.” Because of our hope is in him, he puts his arms around us and hugs us with his love.

During COVID, health department officials have repeatedly asked us to socially distance ourselves. No hugs! My daughter was out of state, but she mailed a homemade card to me. When I opened it, there was a photo of my daughter and paper arms popped open to give me a hug. Is there someone you know who needs a hug? Share a measure of God’s immense love with that person today. If you can’t hug, pass on a tasty gift of chocolate!

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