Light the Advent Candle of Hope!
With Jesus whatever looks hopeless to you,
your stump is never a stump! A shoot of
HOPE can spring from impossible places.
- Ann Voskamp
There has always been something about Advent and
Christmas that tugs at my heart. That waiting in anticipation
for the birth of Jesus. That sense of expectation of looking for God's miracles then and now. That looking forward to the
birth of a Savior, my Savior.
And boy oh boy, do we all need a Savior!
At church last Sunday the children came upstairs from Sunday School to light the first candle of Advent, the candle of HOPE.
Oh how their sweet, small voices echoed through the church, resonating in each of our hearts. They told us, in no uncertain terms, that Jesus brings hope and that His birth changes everything for everyone.
Can I get an AMEN to that!
HOPE has been on my mind and in my heart all week long.
The teacher in me was reminded that HOPE is both a noun and a verb. Hope is something very tangible in my spirit and it is also an action that takes place. I hope, for me, means that I am full of belief and expectation. I am choosing HOPE as a way to know God's grace and love. When I am filled with love and hope, I am right where God wants me to be. At least, that is what God has put on my heart this last week.
So in my prayer time I have used the word HOPE while talking to my Heavenly Father. I have come to Him with a spirit of hope and anticipation and gratitude for the miracles He is doing in my life and yours.
Here are just a few of the hope-filled prayers I have been praying this week:
Dear God, I love you so. I am so grateful for every blessing you have brought to my life. I am so grateful for every challenge that has helped me come closer to You. Please hear my prayers of hope for those I love and care for...
* I have hope for my students at the end of the quarter. Please give them strength to finish strong.
* I have hope for health and rest and reassurance for my daughter who is pregnant. While this pregnancy has not been easy, I am filled with hope for the birth in April of Annora Grace, my granddaughter. Please keep Amy and Annora Grace safe and healthy.
* I have hope for Bert, Lord, and his full recovery after his stroke. Thank you, God, that Bert is still here. I have hope for his renewed memory and strength.
* I have hope for someone I love to be all you have meant for him to be. May he fill his life and heart with You and listen to your plan for him.
* I have hope for my family that as we celebrate the birth of your son, that we dedicate our lives to what You want us to be doing.
* I have hope for my friend Vicky Westra that you can do a miracle in her life and heal her cancer, Father. I believe with all my heart that you can make possible what seems to be impossible. Heal her Father, please heal her.
* I have hope for Sox, the dearest fur baby ever. You love that sweet puppy, Father, and you know the heart of Jackie's daughter. We believe in miracles, God. Please heal Sox.
* I have hope for Grandma Elaine, Lord. All these years she has been your servant and you have been her beloved Father.
Please be with her, God. As she goes through hospice, hold her close. Let her know your presence.
*And Lord, I have hope for my own heart in this Advent season, May I remember that even when things are impossible, hope can appear and spring forth from impossible places.
May I, like that little shepard boy, hear that ringing in the sky
and your voice as big as a sea... calling me to worship you.
May this Advent season be a time of anticipation for you.
May you know, in your deepest heart of hearts, that HOPE can spring from impossible places. With God all things are possible!
Planting a seed is believing in tomorrow . ...