Twenty-twenty has been a year of different. At first, so many had great expectations for this year and new decade. Twenty-twenty vision was the slogan many used to predict what this year would bring. While it may seem like this expectation never came about due to COVID-19, as we near the end of the year, I would have to argue the converse.
We as individuals, as a nation, and, most importantly, as the children of God have gained greater clarity on what truly mattes and is important in life. Many things have been forcefully stripped from our lives, and while we grieve their loss, we also gain new perspective. The many idols we unknowingly constructed to distract and fill our lives have been revealed for what they truly are—false gods. Meanwhile, things we trusted in and found identity and satisfaction in have been cancelled, postponed, and closed down.
But life has continued on. The world continues to rotate around the sun. The seasons have changed despite the fact that we feel like our lives have stopped. God hasn’t changed. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. And as our lives, activities, careers, dreams, and plans have come to a screeching halt, we have gained greater clarity on this truth. In a world of constant change, unknown futures, and confusing uncertainty, God is solid, a Rock that never wavers and an Anchor that forever holds us grounded in the storm.
Therefore, as we enter this season of Advent, it’s going to reflect the rest of 2020 by looking very different. Festivities will be cancelled, holiday plans with families might be impossible, and for some, church services may be virtual. However, the Reason for the season has stayed the same, unchanging over the millennia. The Hope of Christmas and the Gift of Jesus is something that we need to celebrate now more than ever.
We need hope this Christmas. The world needs hope this Christmas. America needs hope this Christmas. Therefore, let us use the extra time we have during this unique advent season to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus—the Hope of Christmas—and purpose to share this Gift with others. We don’t have the excuse of being distracted with festivities, concerts, parties, and other fun activities. So we can really focus our hearts and minds on what this season is really about.
Therefore, will you join me in using the next twenty five days to turn our hearts towards Bethlehem, gazing at the manger, seeing the shadow of the cross, and rejoicing in the unconditional love of God represented in the Gift of Jesus. May this be the best Christmas season ever as we focus our minds and hearts on what truly matters, gaining perspective on the present, vision for the future, and closer intimacy with our Creator.
Happy Advent! Let the awe and wonder of Christmas begin.
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