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DEC. 19 | Beyond Busyness to Hope

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30). The holidays, for most of us, can be pretty busy times.…

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DEC. 18 | Hope and Loneliness

Luke includes an interesting little detail in describing the life and ministry of Jesus. “Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed” (Luke 5:16). It is in the barren and lonely places of our lives where God often shows up. That first Christmas, God showed up and delivered the greatest gift to humankind through a manger, a dark lonely cave full of animal aromas…

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DEC. 17 | Hope During Financial Stress

Christmas can be a time of financial stress for many in the United States. We want to buy gifts for our families and make the holidays special. According to one report, 65 percent of people went over budget on Christmas and 20 percent went into debt to create the Christmas they dreamed of. Even if we are careful, most Americans have little savings and…

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DEC. 16 | Unquenchable Hope

If something is unquenchable, it cannot be doused, smothered, or put out. It’s impossible to suppress or destroy! Unquenchable hope then, is the ability to withstand the hardest times of life knowing a faithful God is for us! Imagine that you are desperate to satisfy your thirst but could not drink enough water to accomplish that desire. Imagine a fire that blazes so hot…

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DEC. 15 | Hope and Aging

Lots of people love to go camping. Just mention the word and you can start them daydreaming about the great outdoors and getting back into it. While backpackers often sleep under the stars, indispensable to a traditional camping trip is a tent; that tried and true synthetic-fabric home away from home. A tent is a shelter with a time limit. It’s where we stay…

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DEC. 14 | Hope When we are Grieving

This summer, my husband and I found ourselves lost in the Santa Cruz mountains on a trail ride. We easily followed a few trail signs at the outset, but about halfway through our 20-mile ride, we ventured down an unmarked road and found ourselves trapped on a narrow, washed-out deer trail. After an hour of bushwhacking and two crashes, we made it back to…

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DEC. 13 | Hope and Love

The Bible is filled with stories that provide examples of God’s great love. One of the first pictures of God’s sacrificial love is the story of Abraham being called to offer up his son, Isaac, in Genesis 22. Abraham had to make an almost impossible choice; whether or not to sacrifice his beloved son on an altar to God. One can only imagine the…

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