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Hope anchors the soul – a thought on Advent

When the pressures of life are crushing, where do we go?

Nine more days until Christmas. Did that just speed your heart up with the thought that there is still too many things that need to get done before then? Or did it speed up your heart in excitement of the anticipation of celebration?

Before we get too far ahead of ourselves with the final week’s preparations, let’s take a moment and prepare space in our thoughts for Him.

Have we left room in our thoughts for Him? Or are we more prone to fill it with lies we tend to think are truth, thoughts about ourselves, or thoughts that look down on others? Are we filling our mind with to-dos and what ifs and should-haves instead of promises and truth?

This world has so many things that bombard our thoughts on a daily basis through news, social media, radio, and advertising. We have to be intentional in order to shove out the negative and make room for Jesus in the very middle of it all. 

All this “noise” can easily push out a core concept of this Advent season – HOPE.

What is hope?

Yakhal is a Hebrew word for hope that means “to wait for” – as in the time when Noah “waited for” the waters to recede.

Qavah is the Hebrew word for hope that means “to wait” as in a time when you pull a rubber band as far as it will go and you “wait for” the release of tension to break.

The combination of these two words of hope is what Christ followers have: we are waiting for Christ (yakhal) and we are also waiting for the release of the tension (qavah) of this life.

God’s past faithfulness motivates hope for the future.

We have hope for the future because we can look back on His promises.

Like Psalm 39:7 that says 

“And so, Lord, where do I put my quavah? My only yakhal is in you.”

In other words: Lord, what else can I do when I am waiting on this tension of life to break? You alone are Who I wait for. We look back to the risen Jesus and wait in anticipation of His return again. This hope anchors our soul, no matter the storms that come, the hope of Jesus can hold us firm and secure.

I have found joy in Psalm 39:7, especially now that I have learned two of the different descriptions of hope. I encourage you to write this verse down and post it prominently in your home. Though it doesn’t appear as a Christmas verse, it can remind us of exactly what Christmas is about: 

Celebrating Christ’s first coming while we wait in hopeful anticipation for His second. 

As we prepare room in our thoughts for Him, let’s center on this hope.

May you find peace and joy in your heart during this Christmas season as you prepare room in your heart and mind for our Jesus.

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