Hope In The Midst of Dispair

I just finished reading Scott Owning’s Blog From Prague that Steve Puckett sent to me.  What an incredible read this is!!  It makes me think of this Christmas season in a whole new light.  I invite you to read it as well. 

Having hope in the midst of pain and suffering is really a beautiful picture of the Christmas story.  I was brought up to believe that this time of year was certainly not the time to talk about the birth of Christ.  I have learned better and know that it really doesn’t matter when we talk about the His birth, but why not live in the moment and magnify Jesus when the world might be listening more than any other time of year?

Yet all of this being true, this reading has helped me see the Christmas story from a whole new perspective.  Owing uses the book of Revelation to show how that Jesus’ story may be more clearly seen in the face of pain and suffering.  We have so commercialized Christmas that it seems that Jesus and His story has been completely put on the back burner.  People all around us are in the middle of pain and suffering and some of theme don’t even know it.  Marriages are hurting, people are sick and dying, unemployment, alcoholism, and the list could go on and on.  Spiritual death seems to be the order of the day.  Yet, we must see that the Christmas story is most deeply felt in the time of despair.

Even Jesus’ birth was surrounded in despair.  His life was full of it.  He not only suffered in His death, but He suffered in His life.  Yet He overcame by the power of His blood and through the resurrection!!

When our lives are full of pain and despair, there is only one way to look and that’s up.  The people of the book of Revelation were killed for their testimony and yet the book is about them overcoming by the blood of the Lamb–the same Lamb who has overcome for us.  What a message of hope!!  I hope this Christmas through my preaching, teaching, and my life to bring hope into the midst of despair for others.

Advertisements

5 responses to “Hope In The Midst of Dispair

  • Greg England

    I started reading that and will come back to it as it looks like a very good series of blogs.

  • cwinwc

    I know you will my Brother as you brought hope to my life this past May at Greg’s.

  • Marnie

    Keith,
    Your messages do bring hope. Not just now at Christmas but every Sunday. I know that I’m encouraged and I believe others are as well. Thank you for sharing from your heart.
    God bless you and your family.

  • Meowmix

    I, too, was taught growing up in the church that we should not celebrate Christmas as the birthday of Christ or Easter as the time of resurrection. After all, it’s more important to focus on His death and resurrection than His birth, and we do that every Sunday through communion! I was quite well into adulthood before I would put up anything like a nativity scene in my house. But I, too, have changed my views a great deal on this matter. His birth did break hope in the midst of despair, and I think the older I get the more I understand how MUCH hope He brings in the midst of MUCH despair. If He hadn’t been born, He couldn’t have lived and died for us. And I no longer believe it to be a disservice to Scripture to focus on one day and think about that miraculous birth. I like what you said about seizing the moment when more people are focused on Him and may be listening more. (I do wonder and question about how our society got to mixing up Christmas trees and credit cards with “Oh Holy Night” (my favorite Christmas song).) I know that anyoone who hears you preach does indeed learn about the hope that He offers because it comes through in what you write. I appreciate you and your thoughts today.

  • Matthew

    I remember learning about Revelation 12 being the spiritual battle behind the Christmas story. It changed how I viewed Christmas forever. Also it is sad when we cannot talk about the birth during this time of year. I love the account and the power behind the story of the coming of the Christ Child.

    http://www.matthewsblog.waynesborochurchofchrist.org

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: