Waiting for hope
By Pastor Joe Cormier
In spite of the trials of the year (and 2020 was no stranger to trials), there is always a bright spot in our Christian calendar that reminds us there is always hope on the horizon. As we look to the new year and what it may bring for us in this season, I am reminded of the wise men from the gospel of Matthew in chapter 2.
As most of you may remember from the stories that we grew up listening to, these wise men came from the East to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him.” I still have the image of these men dressed in elaborate wardrobes, following a shiny plastic star across the platform at my childhood church. Many of us share similar memories.
Waiting for hope
The beautiful part of this story is that there were men, wise men in fact, who were watching and waiting for the Messiah to come into the world. These men knew there was hope on the horizon, and they did not want to miss His coming. Today, the world in which we live is desperate for hope and for truth. Many today, I believe, are waiting for a resolution to the questions they have within them.
They are waiting for a savior that will come into their lives and into the world to bring peace, hope, justice, and freedom to this generation and for generations to come. If you are a believer today, you know this Savior is Jesus, and this is who we celebrate each year on December 25th.
As the world watches and waits, they are watching and waiting for that star to burn brightly once again. I would ask this question—“What happened to that star and where is it today?” I believe the star the world is watching is the church. I’m not talking about a building or a denominational structure, but I am referring to you and to me. The people of God who carry the light of Jesus Christ within us that is meant to shine brightly to this confused and desperate world. In the gospel of Matthew chapter 5, Jesus declares, “you are the light of the world, a city set on a hill cannot be hidden.” He further states, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.”
In a world that remains focused on the material things during this Christmas season, let me encourage you to remember our role, as Christians, is to “let our light shine before men.” The purpose of the star in the story of the wise men was simple. It pointed the wise men to the location of Jesus. Our role is not so different today. Our role, as the church and as Christians, is to point the world in the direction of Jesus. However, there are two critical requirements to complete this task. One, we must know the way ourselves and two, we must be willing to show the way to others.
This Christmas, we, as believers, have a unique opportunity to shine a little brighter. Many are looking for hope on the horizon. Many are looking for guidance coming out of the most challenging year that any of us can remember. This Christmas, shine brightly and point people into the loving arms of Jesus!