Hope: When Light Gets In Your Soul

"Something about the light perpetuates hope, even as the world tries hard to squash those burning embers before they can flame."

December 4, 2019

By Kelly Rempel, One Hope Canada

{Read on for six FREE kid-friendly Advent resources!}

When you’re struggling to untangle that crazy string of lights for your Christmas tree, consider the number 640,215.

That’s the Guinness record-breaking number of bulbs blazing at a holiday display this year at a home in Lagrangeville, New York. (They also use almost 13 kilometres of extension cords!). 

Not quite bright enough? You could pack up your passport and head to Colombia where the annual Medellin Christmas Lighting Festival will feature 27 million sparkling LED lights. That’s a lot of twinkle!

There is something about the light that fascinates us, holds us captive, makes us slow down and take a second look, from the smallest spark to fireworks bursting overhead.

Something about the light perpetuates hope, even as the world tries hard to squash those burning embers before they can flame.

Long before LED bulbs were even a whisper of an idea the prophet Isaiah wrote about the power of light. “Nevertheless, that time of darkness and despair will not go on forever,” he wrote. “Galilee of the Gentiles...will be filled with glory. The people who walk in darkness will see a great light. For those who live in the land of deep darkness, a light will shine.” (Is. 9:1-2).

The people of Isaiah’s time had turned their backs on God and were sinking into despair; it was easier to default to the “land of deep darkness.” Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? It’s something that we--that our children--experience every day, even thousands of years later. Sometimes, we don’t even notice we’re in the dark until the light shines in our eyes and we blink in surprise.

What better time than the weeks leading up to Christmas to turn our hearts back to the light, back toward hope? Back to the wonder of the baby in the manger who grew to save the world?

About 700 years after Isaiah’s prophecy, Jesus declared, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.”
(John 8:12)

The land of deep darkness; the light that leads to life. It is a great dichotomy. But it is also a choice. Jesus says “if you follow”. The choice is up to us. We don’t have to stay in the darkness. We can turn and let the Light into our very souls. Jesus is that “One Hope” not just for Canada, but for the entire world.

That is the message, the Gospel, the good news that we are passionate to share! Thousands of children, youth and families yearn for just a glimmer to show them there is a way out of the land of deep darkness. How will you share the Light this Christmas?

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Check out these free Advent resources to share with kids and families this Christmas as we celebrate the good news of Jesus, the light of the world!

 

  • “A Season of Hope,” four free Advent devotionals from Focus on the Family Canada, includes tips on making your own Advent wreath.
  • Family and kids ministry resources from The Advent Conspiracy (requires free registration,once registered, scroll down for Kids Ministry Resources).
  • Watch this video from The Bible Project, a word study on “Hope” (best suited for older children and grown-ups).

 

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