Each Sunday during Advent (the 4-week season leading to Christmas), we light an additional candle on our Advent wreath. Last week we lit the Candle of Peace, remembering that Christ offers us a peace that passes all understanding.
This week we light the Candle of Hope.
Hope is the life-force God has given us that helps us put one foot in front of the other.
I connect the Visitation of Mary and Elizabeth (Luke 1:39-45) with the Candle of Hope. At the beginning of the story, Mary is a frightened teenage girl. She has just learned that she will conceive and give birth to the Christ Child. Immediately after learning this news, she “went in haste” from her home in Nazareth to the Judean Hill Country. (That’s about a 100 mile walk.) By the end of the story, however, something has changed within Mary. Mary’s heart rejoices as she sings one of the most beautiful songs in all of scripture – the Magnificat (Luke 1:46-55).
What brought about the change in Mary?
I think that during her visit with Elizabeth, a glimmer of Hope shined upon Mary’s soul.
I invite you will join us for worship this week. It will be filled with beautiful music of the Advent and Christmas season. May a ray of Hope shine upon your life that, like Mary, your soul sings for joy.