“There is hope for your future, says the Lord.”  Jeremiah 31:17

“I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which God has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints.”  Ephesians 1:18  

Words of hope can be loose and light: “I hope we can go on a vacation.” “I hope to leave early on Friday.” “I hope I can lose 10 pounds by the reunion.”   

Hope can be thoughtful and caring: “I hope you have a safe trip.” “I hope you see your family at Christmas.” “I hope things go better for you soon.”  

Hope can be fulfilled with goals and hard work.  We have heard of examples of people living with disabilities, poverty, discrimination, and other seemingly impossible situations overcoming such grim odds.  But hope can become frustrated and impatient, sometimes impossible to someone fighting addiction, to someone unable to pay bills, to someone having to leave behind their belongings and home, to someone who can’t see heartache ending.  

During Advent, we read Biblical prophesies of salvation – words of hope and light, spoken to the children of Israel, living in the darkness and despair of bondage.  It is a season when faith and hope become partners as we wait by the phone, hold hands by the bedside, bow our heads by the marker, for we know our need for a Savior was granted, before we ever asked.  This is the hope to which we are called – the “glorious inheritance of the saints”.

In Minnesota, during Advent comes the Winter solstice.  We sink into growing darkness with a sure hope of rising into light.   

Savior, “the hopes and fears of all the years” are met in you.  We pray for families who are grieving loss, fearing illness, separated by whatever circumstances.  Come to us, abide with us, with your light and peace … and hope.  Amen  

Verla Olson