Blog Space of Rev. Adrian J. Pratt B.D, pastor at Mount Hebron Presbyterian Church, Ellicott City, MD

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Look Down The Road

Here at Mount Hebron Presbyterian we are on the road to Christmas and travelling through the season of Advent. On the first Sunday of Advent we'll be looking at Jeremiah 33:14-16.

Jeremiah is a forward looking prophet who was travelling through some difficult days. He realized that things would get worse before they would get better. When we are in such situations, where can we find hope? Here are a couple of Jeremiah’s suggestions.

Realize that God never gives up on us.

The people were well aware that their desperate circumstances were the result of their own failure. God had spoken but they hadn’t listened. God had directed them and they had headed in the opposite direction. God had called and they had searched for another voice to follow. What they had not realized was that God never gives up on God’s people.

It is the same for us. We mess up time after time. We know the right, yet do the wrong. We get ourselves into situations where we can point the finger of blame at nobody other than ourselves. At such times it is good to remember that though we may just about be ready to give up on ourselves, God never gives up on us. God is always ready to restore us and renew our lives.

Rely on God, not on our own efforts. 

Recall Jeremiah’s words of hope to his hopeless ones. 'Judah will be saved and Jerusalem will live in safely. And this is the name by which it will be called: “The LORD is our righteousness.” '(Jeremiah 33:16)

Salvation would come to the people, not because of their own efforts, but because of what God would do. Though they couldn’t see it, the time they were travelling through was not their final destination. They are to look down the road and anticipate God’s deliverance.

Likewise, as we travel through difficult days God calls us to look down the road and see the possibilities that form if we allow His Spirit to lead us and guide us. No instant fix is offered, but through sticking with God real change can come. We can join with Jeremiah in declaring “The LORD is our righteousness.”

For some music the traditional Advent hymn “O Come, O Come Emmanuel” sing by Pentatonix.

Prayer: Lord when times are hard, or we have messed up once again, we find it hard to trust in You. Remind us that You never give up on us. Teach us to rely on You, not on ourselves for our salvation. Be our righteousness and so help us to look down the road of our lives with anticipation and hope. In Jesus name we pray. Amen. 

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