Advent 2022 | Hope in the Waiting | Jacob Sheriff

Titus 2:11-13 (ESV) “For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ…”

We are typically uncomfortable with waiting. Convenience has created self-centered people by focusing on what the individual wants. Waiting removes the deception that we are in control; it means “I am not in control.” Feelings of despair and annoyance naturally come with being out of control, and we tend to use distractions to avoid these feelings. Instead of seeking distractions, though, we need to develop the trust to rely on our God-who-is-in-control.

We are in a time of waiting between the first advent of Jesus Christ and the coming second advent. There is a lot we are waiting for–for things to be made right. Being patient is valuing God’s perfect timing over our own. We need to learn to live in God’s timing and see from a greater perspective: gratefully remember that Jesus did come and also joyfully anticipate that He is coming again.

Wait with hope, Matthew 1:18-23, Immanuel: God with us. God has not abandoned us; He is personally present to our problems. He is faithful to 100% of His promises. In the gap between promise-made and promise-fulfilled, it makes us admit we aren’t in control, but we can trust the one who is in control. To live well in the present, we need HOPE, the blessed hope of His appearing. Hope: a proper perspective of the future that creates a positive attitude in the present. Biblical hope–that Christ will come again–tethers us to something beyond our present feelings and circumstances. Biblical hope is based on the character and faithfulness of God revealed to us in Christ Jesus.

Hope isn’t an emotion. It is a choice, a state of mind that must be nurtured. Choosing hope is a bold proclamation that the present reality is not ultimate reality. You can trust God. Because of Jesus, you can trust God and there is hope for you. He is coming back and everything will be set right.

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