All of us are waiting.
During this season of Advent, I’ve been dwelling on the idea of waiting—a position our culture avoids at all costs. We’ll do anything to bypass the discomfort of waiting.
But what if waiting has a deeper purpose? What if it points us to a greater reality?
As I read and reflect on Scripture from the Bible, I see a restless waiting that leads up to the birth of Christ. Promises of a coming Savior had echoed from the mouths of prophets for hundreds and hundreds of years. And yet…nothing. Many still believed. But many lost hope.
Will a Savior ever come?
Will things ever get better?
A Thrill of Hope
The Christmas Carol, O Holy Night, contains one of my favorite lines of any written work:
A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices.
The only way hope can be described as “a thrill” is if our hearts have reached that place of utter weariness where it feels as if we can’t go on.
It’s when we are at our lowest that we find ourselves most desperate for something—or someone—worth hoping for.
In the midst of deep weariness, we can forget that Christmas is not an empty promise of lights, laughter, and happiness, but rather a fulfilled promise of rescue, redemption, and hope.
Yes, this world hurts. Your loss, abandonment, rejection, failure, loneliness, and fears are all real. And honestly, no Christmas party or Hallmark binge-watching sessions or excessive amounts of gifts will change that.
Weary friend, if you find yourself staring at the empty promises of this world’s version of Christmas and feeling let down and alone, I invite you to turn your eyes toward a baby who was born in a dirty stable, grew up, lived a perfect life, died on a cross, and was resurrected—all to offer a better way.
A way that infuses every dark day with a thrill of hope and a deeper meaning.
Whatever you’re going through, know this: a Savior has come. He sees you. He’s with you in your suffering. He doesn’t mask your pain with fluorescent blinking lights and bell-ringing Santas. Instead, he can and will infuse your life with light that cannot be unplugged or packed away in storage with our tree and trimmings. He offers a purpose that isn’t seasonal, and a love that is never distanced. He offers true hope. A hope that thrills.
And that, weary friend, is a hope worth rejoicing over.