My heart lifted as I plodded through the snow to the Christmas Eve service at the church my father pastored. The warm church was packed with joyful worshippers. We sang Christmas carols, meditated on the story of Christ’s birth, listened to the choir, and then at midnight we lifted candles high, illuminating the beautiful sanctuary. That’s when I felt intangible exhilaration and hope!
I didn’t know that I was only a few years away from giving much of my life to drugs and alcohol—and giving away my hope.
I didn’t appreciate that hope is a rare commodity for most people—even for believers, at times. With so much darkness in the world today, and so many trials and tragedies in our lives, how can we recoup from bad decisions and regrets so that we can hold onto these “candlelight moments”?
Let’s think about what made hope possible when I was holding my candle high on Christmas Eve: the birth of God’s Son, to a virgin!
In a seemingly hopeless time for the southern kingdom of Israel (Judah), God spoke a message of HOPE through the prophet Isaiah:
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:6)
Imagine that! God speaks something that no mortal could have imagined, that a human baby would be called “Mighty God! Everlasting Father!”
Then 800 years after Isaiah’s prophecy, the angel Gabriel announced the same thing to a young virgin we now refer to as the Virgin Mary. The prophecy was about to be fulfilled:
“You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.” (Luke 1:31-33)
Jesus would later declare, “I have come into the world as light, so that whoever believes in me may not remain in darkness.” (John 12:46) Given the incredible miracles He performed, the sinless life He lived, and His great love for every person on Earth, Jesus gave more than enough reason for all mankind to have great HOPE.
Hope that life can feel meaningful, filled with purpose, no matter how great our losses, tragedies, and heartaches.
Thanks to the birth of Christ, we can all be like the Apostle Paul who said, “In all our troubles, my joy knows no bounds.” (2 Corinthians 7:4)
After years of “looking for love in all the wrong places” and giving my time and energy to the world, the flesh, and the Devil, God answered a desperate prayer and revealed Himself to me.
Since giving my life to Christ, I’ve experienced many miracles, I’ve read of at least 3,000 of them, and I’ve been personally told of many—and I mean the incredible kind of miracles, just like in the Bible! The kind where God calls things that are not as though they are, miracles such as angels appearing as people then disappearing, and people hearing an audible voice from God that gave instruction or even saved lives.
Considering that “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8), it’s no surprise that God is performing incredible miracles around the world every day! Even now, just as Jesus said, “All things are possible to Him who believes.” (Mark 9:23)
During the Christmas season, we remember the greatest hope-giving miracle of all: that Jesus Christ was born into the world! This makes all the other miracles we will ever need in our lives possible!
No matter what you have been through, God is watching over you, loves you from the inside out, and never stops inviting you to have HOPE in Him! No matter your heartaches, if you put them in the context of the amazing miracle of Christ’s birth, you may want to lift up a candle in any dark season of your life to celebrate that there is always HOPE!
Reclaiming Hope Together,
Dr. Chet Weld’s book about miracles, God is in the Crazy: with Astounding Miracles and Reflections on the Peaceful Life, is available on Amazon.
The Truth About Depression, click here to listen to Dr. Weld on Living the Reclaimed Life Podcast.
To learn more about Dr. Chet Weld, visit his website, drchetweld.com