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A Thrill of Hope the Weary World Rejoices

11.30.17 | by Matt Doan

October 9 was a significant date in 2017 for many of us here in Orange County. This was the day the ‘Canyon 2’ fire ripped through the canyons of Anaheim and Orange, destroying 9,200 acres and 15 residential homes. One of the places impacted by the fire was Peter’s Canyon Regional Park in Orange. This beautiful hiking spot transformed overnight from being a wilderness oasis to something that looks like the surface of the moon. Yet even in its damaged and weary condition, today there is hope blossoming at the park. 

Here is a picture I snapped on my phone this week of fresh and new greenery popping out of the burnt ground. Even in devastation, God always gives us glimpses of hope!

 
I love the powerful lyric from the Christmas hymn, “O Holy Night” which says, “A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices.” (by the way, you should watch “The Voice’s, Jordan Smith’s amazing version of this song!)

It certainly is true that our world is weary. As Christians, we are not immune from difficulties and feeling the weary effects of suffering. Yet as believers in Jesus Christ, we have hope, dare I say, the “thrill of hope” written all over our hearts and lives! The apostle Paul writes powerfully in the book of Romans 15:12-13:

Again Isaiah says, “There shall come the root of Jesse, And He who arises to rule over the Gentiles, In Him shall the Gentiles hope.” Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

Whenever you are feeling weary, remember you have hope in Jesus Christ!

Go hike up at Peter’s Canyon sometime this month and see the hope that is springing forth from the weary land and join us this week here at Calvary Church.

This coming weekend, we have several events planned at Calvary Church that will powerfully remind us of our hope in Jesus Christ:

• “Sing Christmas: Joy to the World” is a free event this Friday at 7:00 pm and Saturday at 2:00 pm and Sunday at 4:00 pm and 6:00 pm in the Chapel. It is will be a powerful time of choir performance, a full orchestra, hand bells and Christmas songs from the around the world. You will be profoundly touched and filled with hope by this Christ-centered celebration, plan on making this event part of your weekend!

• “Christmas for a Cause” is on our church campus this Saturday evening from 5:00 to 8:00 pm in the Worship Center Lobby and is a shopping experience like none other! All vendors will be selling great Christmas gift items such as jewelry, clothes, pottery, beanies and holiday cards with proceeds from the sales going to help kingdom causes around the world. Be intentional about your shopping this Christmas season by investing in things that make a global difference and give others hope!

• This Sunday morning, at 9:00 am and 11:00 am, we open our Christmas sermon series “Advent: Longing for More” with an inspiring message on Hope based on Romans 15:12-13. Invite those in your circle who really need to be encouraged to find their hope in Jesus this Christmas season to come with you this Sunday.

May you experience the thrill of hope in this weary world this Christmas season and may it cause you to rejoice,

Matt Doan
Reach Pastor

 

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