Laying Our Lives DownHow has Jesus’ example inspired you to freely give of yourself?
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SATURDAY, DECEMBER 31
Hope Springs Eternal
Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased (v.14).
A mere half-hour watching the news today can fill one with despair as we witness the effects of greed, selfishness, and depravity. It pains the heart to see the utter devastation of the downtrodden. As we take in such brokenness it can lead us to lower our weary heads and simply trudge through life one day at a time—hope for a better tomorrow diminishing with each passing moment.
The shepherds watching their flocks the night Jesus was born might have felt the same way (Luke 2:8). On the lowest rung of society, their future prospects seemed dim at best. Imagine their awe when the night sky lit up with the radiance of God’s glory! (v.14). Unable to sit still after the angel’s joyful news, they rushed to Bethlehem to see this new hope for themselves (vv.10-11,15-16).
Every announcement of His arrival on earth expressed God’s intention towards mankind—peace, goodwill, and salvation (vv.10-11,14). At a time when Roman oppression made the future look bleak, Jesus came forth as a shining beacon of better times ahead.
Each New Year’s Eve—no matter how rough the previous 12 months were—we dig deep down and rustle up anticipation for a new beginning. While there’s nothing wrong with hoping for a happier year, it’s much better to base our hope on the one sure foundation—Jesus.
His birth, death, and resurrection provide us with real hope— hope far greater than a fingers-crossed wish driven by the calendar.
As we make our New Year resolutions for 2017, may we forge a commitment to the hope Jesus holds out. Drawing closer to the Savior of our souls and seeking Him in truth will cause real hope to abound and flourish as it springs us into an eternal certainty. —Remi Oyedele
Read Isaiah 9:1-7 to see the prophecy of hope based in Jesus and His coming to earth.
Does the prospect of a new year fill you with anticipation or trepidation? How does the hope Jesus offers factor into your response?
- Laying Our Lives Down - How has Jesus’ example inspired you to freely give of yourself?...read more
- "Brutiful" - How has God worked in “brutiful” ways in your life?...read more
- The First Day—Again - How does Jesus’ resurrection infuse you with fresh hope?...read more
- Clueless at the Light - What would others say about my influence on them?...read more
- Stinging Words - How have you experienced emotional or spiritual captivity?...read more
- Everyone Has a Story - Who needs you to listen to them? Make time for them today....read more
- Gateway of Hope - How has the rough stuff of your life kept you from hoping in God?...read more
- Philip Flunked - What specific truth about God could help you with a problem you’re currently facing?...read more
- Source of All Life - Every blessing comes from God....read more
- Trapped in Sin - How can you be set free and made right with God?...read more
- Hope Beyond Discouragement - How will you point others to the Source of Hope today?...read more
- Play Your Part - How can you encourage others to fulfill their calling?...read more
- Broken Community - How do we live out holiness without becoming judgmental of others?...read more
- Giving Out Love - How has God provided for you and those you love?...read more
- Assets that Matter - How can you submit more fully to the Holy Spirit’s refining work in your life?...read more
- The Skeptic - What doubt about God is most persistent in your thoughts?...read more