Hope for the hopeless, peace for the fearful

Published 4:54 pm Friday, December 1, 2017

Addyson greatly enjoys staying at our house, just as I liked staying with my grandparents when I was a child.  I hope Addy’s memories of staying with us will become as dear to her as my memories are of those days and nights that I spent with my grandparents.

After Addy relaxed with me as we watched Jim Carey’s presentation of How The Grinch Stole Christmas, we turned in for the night.  She got up Saturday morning ready to face a new day at Nana’s house.  As I was getting ready to carry out my plans for the day, as I often do, I had the news on on the television.  Like usual, one bad story after another was being covered and images of tragic things were being flashed on the screen.  I looked at Addy to see her little eyes locked on what the news anchor was saying and showing.  I did not say anything to her, but I wondered what must have been going on in her little seven year old mind. 

When I was her age, the Vietnam War was in full swing; all kinds of things were being reported, including casualty numbers that were heartbreaking.   It was upsetting to my young mind to hear of so much that I did not understand; it left me with many questions about what would happen next, and the burden of struggling with fears that were hard to carry.

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I trust that children like Addy will not spend their young lives with fear hovering over them.  Instead, I hope that they will learn that even though we live in a sin stricken world that suffers horribly from the consequences of sin, God is always in control and we can rest in assurance the He loves us.

The tendency to let fear trouble us because of what is going on around us is not confined to the young—fear can affect us all.  Shortly before I sat down to write tonight I learned of North Korea’s most recent missile launch.  What will happen next?  Will their actions impact my family?  Endless questions could be asked in that regard, but most of them have no easy and certain answers.

There is so much in our world that we have no control over, but what we can have confidence in is that there is One Who is in control of everything.  He makes inner peace available to us no matter how torn our world is.  And as we prepare to celebrate the birth of Christ that took place in Bethlehem so long ago, we can rest assured that He came that we can know perfect peace.

As much as we sometimes want to isolate and protect our little ones from the realities of the cruel and difficult world we live in, we cannot.  But what we can do to help them through it all is to remind them that Jesus Christ can be trusted to bring peace to their hearts in the midst of all of life’s hardships and uncertainties.

As we journey through this season of celebration and the observance of the birth of Messiah–Jesus Christ–the Bible provides us with these words describing Him Who was born in Bethlehem long ago:  “The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us.  We have seen His glory, the glory of the One and Only, Who came from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:14, New International Version). 

His grace and truth provides hope for the hopeless and peace for the fearful!