Jesus, the hope of our world, is remembered during this season of Christmas as God’s gift to creation. He is more than a symbol of hope or a message of hope; he is our hope. He came to reveal God’s love, God’s way, God’s truth, and a new way of life. As we continue through these 12 days of Christmas, maybe it would be a good exercise to ask, Is Jesus my hope, and do I live like it?
Too often I find myself misplacing my hope. I place my hope in my income or in a new project or a person; my energy for living and hope is found in some temporal, less satisfying source. It is easy for us who have so much to misplace our hope. Our trust is placed in political solutions or our financial resources, or we just give up on hope and muddle through. This is not the way of following Christ.
During this Christmas season, may we make it a matter of deep reflection and concerted prayer to ask, Am I becoming a person of genuine hope?
May the following passage guide us in going beyond comprehension to a deep, intimate knowledge of where our hope lies. May we begin to grow in this area and allow this deep, historical, and mysterious hope begin to displace our misplaced trust in temporal hopes.
“Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:
‘Sovereign Lord, as you have promised,
you may now dismiss your servant in peace.
For my eyes have seen your salvation,
which you have prepared in the sight of all nations:
a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
and the glory of your people Israel.’”
[Luke 2: 25-31]