“Enter his gates with thanksgiving; go into his courts with praise. Give thanks to him and praise his name.”
Psalm 100:4 NLT
The thing about good news is that it lifts you up. It makes a dark day brighter. It reminds you that you are right to live in hope.
Even if it’s not your own good news. I heard from a friend today that he and his wife are expecting. It’s good news. It doesn’t directly affect my day to day life, but I am happy for my friends. I will be praying for them and looking forward to the day when the first pictures of the new child are shared.
This good news reminds me that hope is a good way to live. That if I choose to live a life in which I find hope in the promises of God, that hope will be rewarded. Good news will happen. And with good news will come celebration.
The angelic announcements of the coming of the Messiah were very good news. And though they were sometimes met with uncertainty, with doubt, even with some fear – it’s been more than 2000 years and we are still celebrating the good news brought by the Angels.
The birth of the Messiah, the coming of the King, is to be celebrated. Not just at this wonderful time of year, but daily. In good seasons and bad seasons, in easy times and difficult times, in the exciting moments and in the moments of dull routine.
Because the Messiah, Jesus, is where our hope is found, where our salvation is found, where our freedom is found.
May you – and I – remember daily to enter his gates with thanksgiving in our hearts, and enter his courts with praise. For the Messiah. For Jesus. For the very good news!
“Praise the Lord, the God of Israel,
because he has visited and redeemed his people.
He has sent us a mighty Savior
from the royal line of his servant David,
just as he promised through his holy prophets long ago.
Now we will be saved from our enemies
and from all who hate us.
He has been merciful to our ancestors
by remembering his sacred covenant—
the covenant he swore with an oath to our ancestor Abraham.”
Luke 1:68-73 NLT
Today is the Advent Sunday of Hope. The beginning of my favourite season of the year. A time of expectant waiting. A time in which we prepare for the birth of the saviour – for the coming of the King.
The time of wonder has arrived. For us, living in today’s world, the time of wonder comes every year. We mark it with celebrations. By lighting candles and stringing lights. By putting up special decorations. By taking part in traditions and rituals. By singing special songs.
In Zechariah’s time it was announced by Heavenly messengers and signs of wonder: the barren Elizabeth bore a child who would prepare the way for the Messiah.
If we are people of faith, we are called to live in hope. To allow our hope – centered in the promises of God revealed through the birth, life, teachings, death and resurrection of Jesus – to reach out and touch the world around us. To change the world around us.
I wonder what you can do – what I can do – each day of Advent to show the hope that is in us to the world? Maybe a kind word, said at the right moment. Maybe a gesture of generosity to those in need. Maybe a healing hug for one in despair.
The time of wonder has arrived. Let’s participate in the wonderful hope we have found in Jesus, and share it with the world around us.