Devotional

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” — 1 Peter 1:3.

Barack Obama once said, “If you go out and make some good things happen, you will fill the world with hope, you will fill yourself with hope.” 2000 years ago a baby was born in Bethlehem, and the world was forever changed.  And today lives are still being forever changed.  The birth of Jesus gave people hope during biblical times and we still have that hope today. But contrary to popular opinion, hope can be turned into an actionable roadmap that literally walks you from where you are to where you want to be within the very near future.  Hope then, is not simply emotion, attitude, or a feeling. It is confidence that defines us.

Some people may well think that being a Christian just means professing a faith in Jesus, but Jesus clearly said “Follow me.”  Sometimes, that means literally dropping everything like the first disciples, and doing what we feel called by God to do. Providing hope to others can feel risky, but often exciting, and God sustains us through the changes that are necessary.

Putting hope or faith into action can take many different shapes, but I believe it should always follow Jesus’ example of solidarity with those less fortunate, inclusion of those on the margins, and putting others before ourselves. There are so many needs out there, including at Christmas time. We can’t fix all of them, none of us have time, resources or money to fix every wrong. We have to focus on what is most important to us, or on where we can most use our knowledge and passion to make a difference, and then hope that other Christians will take up other causes.

Giving hope to others won’t be quick or easy, but it is possible.  We see examples of changing people’s lives all the time. You have to choose to get involved. It requires a resolve to get involved, to make a difference in somebody’s life this Christmas season. I pray that today you begin your journey to let hope in today.

Discussion Questions:

  1. What does a hope filled life look like?
  2. Through Christ, we have hope. How can that be evident in your life this week?