Summary: Where is your hope this Christmas? If your hope is in Jesus, you’ll never be disappointed. The true hope of Christmas is for yesterday, today and tomorrow.
Well, Thanksgiving is over. The table is cleared and everything’s gone except the leftovers. You know what that means, don’t you? I know what it means in my house. It means Christmas time is in full swing. Miranda loves Christmastime. For years, if it was up to her, we would have the Christmas tree up year round. As a matter of fact, that was one of the negotiation points we had to work out before we got married. We agreed that the tree and the decorations would not go up until after Thanksgiving. And by New Years Day they were gone. So I guess you know what we were doing after Thanksgiving dinner was finished. Nothing quite compares to stringing out Christmas decorations with an overstuffed belly full of Thanksgiving dinner. But when the tree and the decorations come out, that’s when the kids start to get excited. They get even more excited when the packages start appearing under the tree. We have a tradition where everybody tries to guess what their presents are. Sometimes that can get you in trouble. I remember one time when I was growing up that there was a package under the tree that I was just sure was this toy that I really wanted. I was sure of it. The box was just the right size. It was the right shape. It even weighed the same. I had hoped for that toy ever since I saw it in the catalogue. And now the only thing between me and it was some paper and a box. And then Christmas came. I tore into that box like a dog after raw meat. But it wasn’t what I thought it was. It wasn’t what I had been hoping for. As I remember it was something a whole lot better. It was something I hadn’t even asked for because I thought there was no way I would get it. In a way, I didn’t get what I had hoped for. But in another way, I got so much more than I hoped for. So many times that’s the way our relationship with Jesus is. We can lay out all the things we hope for in life and ask Jesus for them. There are a lot of false prophets out there today that will tell you that’s what Jesus does. They’ll tell you that Jesus is there to grant your wishes and give you all the things on your wish list. And many times when we hear things like that, that’s where we place our hope. Sadly, we place our hope in getting the things on our wish list. Now granted, the things on that wish list can be good things. You can be asking for your health. You can be asking for a good job. You can be asking for a new house. You can be asking for all kinds of good things. And you should pray and ask God about those things. But is that where your hope is? Is your hope in getting a better job? Is your hope in getting a new house or car? Is your hope even in getting better health? If those are the things your placing your hope in, you might be disappointed. You might not get what you’re asking for. But you know what? If your hope is in Jesus, you’ll get something a whole lot better. The hope that Jesus gives is greater than the greatest job. The hope that Jesus gives is greater than the biggest house and the nicest car. The hope that Jesus gives is even greater than perfect health and no sickness and no pain. That is the true hope of Christmas. The hope that doesn’t come in boxes or giftbags. The hope that you can’t get at the mall. The hope that doesn’t fade when the needles begin to fall from the tree. The true hope of Christmas is eternal. It is eternal because the true hope of Christmas is hope for yesterday. It is hope for today. And it is hope for tomorrow. First, the true hope of Christmas is hope for yesterday. Look with me again at verse 4: