Friday, December 3rd
Because your steadfast love is better than life,
my lips will praise you…
for you have been my help,
and in the shadow of your wings I sing for joy.
My soul clings to you;
your right hand upholds me.
~ Psalm 63:3,7-8 (NRSV)
Do not fear, for I am with you,
do not be afraid, for I am your God;
I will strengthen you, I will help you,
I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.
~ Isaiah 41:10 (NRSV)
Let us hold fast to the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who has promised is faithful. ~ Hebrews 10:23
What is that one thing which will keep us through all turns in life is our hope. Cling to that hope. ~ Garima Dixit
I fondly remember the childhood bedtimes when my younger sister Janet would ask me to hold her hand in the darkness. Her nighttime fears diminished when I reached out to cling to her hand. She could then peacefully sleep, knowing I was near – and she was not alone. Even though I was just a child myself, I found joy in being able to reassure and comfort my little sister. Now as adults, we live miles apart and have our own busy lives and families. But in times of trial or worry, we continue to cling to each other through texts, calls, and prayers. Our fears and concerns are eased by the sharing of our burdens, by the caring of our companionship.
I like to think that God also finds joy in reassuring and comforting us in the darkness of our fears and worries. God’s promise to Isaiah speaks of that reassurance and hope: Do not fear, I am with you, do not be afraid, for I am your God. God wants to help us, to hold us, to fill us with hope – as we cling to God’s presence in Christ.
Our hope in Christ does not mean we will avoid trials or hardships, but that we can trust him to be our caring companion, our helper, for every path we travel. We will face and endure the difficulties together, holding fast to each other. We will journey with him through our present darkness, one step at a time, until a new dawn appears.
Today let’s carry a small token to remind us of our hope in Christ – such as a penny, a cross, a stone, or a rosary. Let’s be mindful to grasp this item throughout the day, and let it serve to remind us of the One in whom we hope, the One who is with us always, and the One who never leaves us alone.
Cling. What hope will you find as you hold fast to Christ today?
Prayer: Jesus, our companion for all of life, help me to be aware of the nearness of your hope-filled presence today. As I cling to you, enable me to release all that is not from you, so that I may receive all that is. May your abiding presence also fill my soul with the hope that encourages, reassures, and comforts others who may be feeling alone in the darkness. Amen.