Preparation Produces Hope
As the hectic hustle and bustle of the holidays is now underway, take some time every day to reflect on the importance of this time of waiting and preparation. In a time when our world seems to be spinning out of control, we must remember that everything God does, or allows, is according to His purpose and plan.
Our purpose in celebrating Advent (the four week season of preparation prior to Christmas day) is three-fold:
1) To remember how God has graciously revealed Himself to man since the beginning of time,
2) To keep us centered on Jesus during this busy holiday time, and
3) To trust that God is sovereign over all things.
During the second week of Advent, we remember how God has graciously revealed Himself to man since the beginning of time and how we can prepare our hearts to trust Him.
Throughout the Old Testament we read of God preparing His people to receive His gift of grace—the coming of Jesus into the world. From the calling of Abraham to Isaac’s obedience, from Jacob’s surrender to the words of the prophets, we read of God building-up and preparing a nation to be His people. They were chosen by God, not because they were special, and not because they were capable, but because they were to be the people through whom God would reveal His plan of redemption and fulfill His promise to send a Rescuer to save man from His sin (Genesis 3:15) .
In God’s mercy and grace the nation of Israel was blessed and sustained by their God. The nation grew in their knowledge and understanding of God and of His will and ways. God desires the same for all who are called by His name. In our journey of sanctification (from the moment we were saved until the time God takes us home to Heaven), we are to participate in preparing ourselves to be more and more like Jesus. While it is God who conforms us (Romans 8:29) and it is His Word that transforms us (Romans 12:2), we are to participate by focusing our thoughts and our time on knowing God better and enjoying Him more. This is done by reading and studying the Holy Bible, by prayerful communion with God and by having fellowship with other believers.
Pause and Prepare
As you make preparations for Christmas celebrations, make time to pause and prepare your heart. Do this by looking for Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith (Hebrews 12:2).
In addition to the prophets, God also revealed Himself through types and patterns. Every type and pattern found in the Bible whispers the name of Jesus and reveals God’s prophetic plan. The types and patterns point to the Person and works of Jesus, the Messiah of Israel, the Saviour of man.
The purpose of the types and patterns recorded in the Old Testament was to further prepare God’s people to recognize and receive their Messiah. In our time, these types and patterns help us to “see” Jesus better. “Seeing” Jesus helps us to focus on Him and to let His Holy Spirit direct our thoughts and actions.
Make time to read the Bible every day. Look for Jesus on every page. He’s there in types and patterns that reveal all of His wonderful attributes and works.
Take a minute to read, “See Jesus on every page of the Bible.”
It will help you get started in looking for Jesus on every page of the Bible. Select a couple of the types or patterns and do some further study. Read the Scripture verses, passages or even the books, as a way to prepare your heart for the celebration of Jesus’ birth.
See Jesus On Every Page of the Bible! More than 200 glimpses of Jesus in types and patterns!
The Season of Advent (the 4 weeks before Christmas)
What is Advent?
HOPE Advent Candle 1 – Prophecy Gives Hope (video)
LOVE Advent Candle 2 – Promise Reveals Love (video)
JOY Advent Candle 3 – Jesus Is Our Joy (video)
PEACE Advent Candle 4 – Pause to Find Peace (video)
Christmas Day: When Love Was Born — Light the CHRIST Candle
What is the Prophetic Symbolism of Advent Candles?
How Do We “Take” Advent and Find Rest?
Download a Daily Devotional for Advent
Christmas-themed GOT QUESTIONS?
- What are the Events of Jesus’ Birth? A Simple Timeline and Chronology
- Misconceptions about the Journey to Bethlehem (video)
- What do Zelophehad’s Daughters have to do with Christmas?
- Errors in the Nativity Story? Is Jesus’ birthplace wrong?
- Who were the Three Wise Men? Fact or legend?
- How Did the Wise Men Know to Follow His Star?
- Did The Wise Men Arrive 12 Days After Jesus’ Birth? Or Was It Much Later?
- What is the significance of the Three Kings' gifts?
- Was Jesus born in a stable, a cave, or a house?
- Should we celebrate Jesus’ birthday in September?
- Was Jesus born in September (not December?)
- Does “Xmas” Cross Jesus Out of Christmas?
- What is the Prophetic Symbolism of Advent Candles?
- The Most Important Lesson for YOU in the Nativity Story?
- Was Mary a Levite, making Jesus both King and Priest?
- Should Christians Celebrate Christmas?
- How did Jesus become a man?
- Do You Get These 7 Things Right or Wrong About the Nativity Story?
- Are You Stuck in the Middle This Christmas? (short video lessons from the popular comedy TV show "The Middle.")
- What are the Prophecies of Christmas? (video)
- Where are the genealogies of Jesus in Mark and John?
- Why Are There Two Different Genealogies for Jesus?
- Should I Say “Happy Holidays” Instead of “Merry Christmas?
- Scripture Cookies – Fun for the Whole Family!
- A Boastful Christmas Letter
- Peace Delivers Hope
- Promise Ignites Hope
- Preparation Produces Hope
- Prophesy Reveals Hope
- Alone at Christmas? Feeling lonely?
- Another reason God came to dwell with man.
- How can you have a white Christmas without snow?
- Christmas, abortion, and Joseph, the forgotten man of Christmas
- Remember the Wonder of Christmas
- Will you find rest, peace, and joy this advent season?
- A Christmas Morning Prayer by Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894)
- The Christmas Story in Poetic Verse, by Alvy E. Ford (1918-2005)
- Need a Quick Christmas Letter with a Significant Message?
- It All Happened in a Moment
Christmas Word Search Puzzles
- The Most Beautiful O Holy Night O Night Divine, when Christ was Born
- A Baby Changes Everything, by Faith Hill
- Mary, Did You Know?
- While You Were Sleeping — A Wake Up Call for America
- I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day, by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, performed by Casting Crowns
- Mary’s Child — from the movie, A Christmas Wish
- The True Meaning of Christmas: The Sacrifice Began (How Many Kings)
- What If You Had Been There When Jesus Was Born? (video)
- Pause to Find Hope. Receive the Promises of God. See Jesus. Hear God’s Plan.
- Christmas Trivia Fun
- Songs of Christmas Series: Away in a Manger; Mary, Did You Know? The Rose of Bethlehem; Good Christian Men Rejoice; Hark! The Herald Angels Sing; I Wonder As I Wander; What Child Is This? The First Noel; In the Bleak Midwinter (a golden oldie)
Have You Heard About This Baby Boy? A most beautiful rendition of Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah, with a Christmas message to touch your heart and give joy to your soul.
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The Top Ten Got Questions? in 2022
- The Meaning of NUMBERS in the Bible?
- Was Jesus CRUCIFIED on Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday?
- Did The Wise Men Arrive 12 DAYS AFTER JESUS’ BIRTH? Or Was It Much Later?
- How long did JOB SUFFER?
- What is the Significance of the Wise Men's THREE GIFTS? And were they kings?
- How are the Shepherd’s ROD and STAFF Different?
- Which Old Testament Book Did JESUS QUOTE most often?
- The Meaning of COLORS in the Bible?
- ONLY ONE LIFE, Twill Soon Be Past – by C.T. Studd (1860 – 1931)
- How was Jesus Like a Worm? What’s the CRIMSON (OR SCARLET) WORM in Psalm 22?
More Popular Got Questions
- Did Jesus Fight Satan to Take Back the KEYS of Death and Hell?
- How Did the Wise Men Know This Was the Messiah and KNOW TO FOLLOW HIS STAR?
- What do the 12 stones UNDER the JORDAN River mean? (Joshua 4)
- Jesus' Last Days TIMELINE: The Cross and The Crucifixion
- How Many MIRACLES Did Jesus Do?
- Is Leonard Cohen’s “HALLELUJAH” a Christian Song?
- Where did OT Saints go at death? ABRAHAM'S BOSOM?
- SIN, INIQUITY, TRANSGRESSION? How are they different?
- What are the NAMES of JEHOVAH Hidden in Psalm 23?
- Jesus in the Gospels: What are the Four Different Presentations of Jesus?
- If BAPTIZED as an Infant, Do I Need to Be Re-Baptized?
- Why Did God Create Man Knowing MAN WOULD SIN?
- What Did Jesus Say About HEAVEN (and HELL)?
- What are the “I Will ” STATEMENTS of Satan, God, and Jesus?
- Was MARY a LEVITE Making Jesus both a Priest and King?
- Why Was a RAM SACRIFICED in Genesis 22 Instead of a Lamb?
- Is Satan’s Real Name LUCIFER?
- Can Jews go to Heaven without knowing Jesus?
TOP TEN Videos from Reasons for Hope* Jesus
- Memorial Day BAGPIPES TRIBUTE: Amazing Grace
- RISE AND SHINE and Give God the Glory, Glory!
- WERE YOU THERE When They Crucified My Lord?
- PAUL HARVEY: THE BIRDCAGE
- PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN: A SOLDIER'S PLEDGE
- Hark! the Herald Angels Sing -- CHARLIE BROWN Christmas
- JOHN WAYNE ~ WHY I LOVE AMERICA
- Jimmy Stewart - Nativity Scene Prayer: Mr. Krueger's Christmas
- THE LEGEND OF THE CANDY CANE - A Christmas Story to Share
- Not by Might, Not by Power, But BY MY SPIRIT says the Lord (Zechariah 4:6)
- Erwin Lutzer - We Will Not Be SILENCED