Hope During Christmas

By: Woody Godbey

Scripture reading today is Psalms 60. Read the chapter, just 12 verses. The last verse is the most important, "Through God we shall do valiantly (experience victory), for He it is who shall tread down our adversaries."

Here we are in the midst of another holiday season, a joyful time for many. But for others it's a time of loneliness, sadness and even a depressive state of mind. Most people have times in their lives when they feel it's just all too much to bear. They feel like completely giving up on persevering and even giving up on God. It's especially hard when they have had a past that has been especially challenging to breakthrough. Death, financial woes, relationships gone bad, divorce, etc. are just a few things that can cause these feelings. Many of these things come home to roost during the Christmas season. No matter how hard we try, we just can't get past the sad feelings.

I'm reading from the Amplified Bible this morning which is my favorite for reading. Don't forget, read Psalms 60 to understand more clearly God's help for us.

Isaiah 61:3 says: "To grant [consolation and joy] to those who mourn in Zion- to give them an ornament (a garland or diadem) of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, the garment [expressive] of praise instead of a heavy, burdened, and failing spirit- that they may be called oaks of righteousness [lofty, strong, and magnificent, distinguished for uprightness, justice, and right standing with God], the planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified."

Psalm 30:11 says: "You have turned my mourning into dancing for me; you have put off my sackcloth and girded me with gladness."

And verse 5 says: "Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning."

Though we go through these dark times, God will bring us back into a time of rejoicing.

Proverbs 17:22 says: "A happy heart is good medicine and a cheerful mind works healing, but a broken spirit dries up the bones."

A broken spirit brings about a sense of hopelessness. But how do we acquire a 'happy heart' and a 'cheerful mind'? It can only be found in our relationship with Jesus. We have to do our part which starts in surrendering to Him daily. Then prayerfully read and apply God's Word to our lives. It does come. He will clothe us with the garment of praise. One thing I find that really lifts my spirit, is listening to Christian music. Christmas carols about the birth of Christ really lifts my spirit. Your favorite Christian songs and Christian carols can help transform those days of despair.

You may be feeling the way the psalmist did in Psalms 60 but I want you to know, just like the Psalmist experienced, 'There is hope'. And Jesus fully understands how you feel. Whatever you do, do not give up! Let God transform your life and turn your sorrow into joy. And don't forget, do your part and joy will come! God Bless!!