Pilot Knob Lutheran Hope 12/14/2022
People die from the lack of oxygen. A severe drought can create a famine and people will die from the lack of food. We can live only so long without water and we will die from dehydration. These are obvious to us all. What may not be so obvious is that people die from the lack of hope. Hope is essential for life; without it all seems lost.
What is hope? We often use it as a verb: “I hope things will turn out better,” or “I hope you get all you want for Christmas.” Then we turn up our feelings and try to generate enough emotional energy to bring what we hope for to reality. In scripture hope is used as a noun, it is not a wish or dream, it is tangible and real as any object. Our hope is based on a person who never changes his mind, and is present at every moment. Our hope is in God who is present with his grace and will return to make everything new for his followers.
God, our creator is our hope who created us to live in relationship with him and other people. We are not meant to live alone. You would think with the many people around us and the availability of social media no one would be lonely. Not so! Loneliness is a modern-day epidemic related to hopelessness. When we do not have healthy relationship with others, especially family then thoughts of loneliness begin to set in and we begin to feel isolated and alone. Isolation can be a link to negative thinking and self-talk. This has a way of disrupting healthy relationships and in turn our emotional well-being. If we go down that path not far behind is the dark thought: “you are worthless, you are not loved, no one cares about you.”
Without a healthy identity we lose sight of our purpose for the two are connected. This sense of purpose is what helps us get out of bed in the morning. Otherwise, we begin telling ourselves; “who cares.” At this point something is lost that is essential for life, physical, spiritual, and emotional wellbeing – hope.
We need healthy relationships with God and others to maintain hope. God came to us in his son Jesus to show us the Father’s love and to remove the barrier that separates us. This is the meaning of Christmas – hope for life today and eternal life for tomorrow.
Pr. Bob Snitzer
By the Way:
Today, 4:30 Confirmation class.
December 18, 9:00 Morning worship.
10:15 Sunday school for all ages.
December 24, 4:00 Christmas Eve service. No Christmas day service.
After Christmas Sunday school will resume January 8.
GriefShare support group will begin January 15, 2:00, and meet every other week for 13 weeks. If you know of anyone who would benefit from this encourage them to attend.
Sermons may be heard on KIOW 107.3 FM Sunday mornings at 7:00. Spread the word. If you would like to support this outreach with a contribution, it costs $55 each week.