Grace and Peace to you.
In accordance with God's promise,
we wait for new heavens and a new earth,
where righteousness is at home.
—2 Peter 3.13
What are your deepest, holiest hopes? Hopes for your life? For your family? Your community? Your world? The universe? Imagine those hopes fulfilled. Give your heart to your hopes. This is faith.
Don't think that your hopes are too audacious. God’s hopes for the world are even more audacious than you can imagine. Mary thought it audacious that God should choose her to carry God’s hope for the world, but it was true. The same is true of us.
It might seem that your life is too messed up, the world too much in the grip of evil, for there to be much hope. But our hope doesn't come from wishful thinking, or from the world or its condition. It comes from God. Hope rises from the love that is at the heart of all things. It comes from trust that the love that created the world can transform the world. Of course there is evil in the world, and failure in our own lives, but we don't live under its spell. We choose to live by the light of God's promise, not the world's threats and disappointments. Exercise the muscles of hope, not despair, for despair holds the door open for evil, while hope holds the door open for God.
Attend to your hope. Listen to it. Bring it to mind. Envision the fulfillment of your hope. Let it be real. Live as if your trust it. Imagine it coming to pass. Live as if it is coming to pass even now. Live as if Christ is actually coming.
God moves this world not by force but by the Spirit. By participating in God’s hope for the world, like Mary did, we help it to come to fruition — no matter how many generations it takes. This Advent season, give voice to your hope, and live by its light. Be awake. Live hopefully.
Copyright © Steve Garnaas-Holmes