“Praise the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. According to His great mercy, He has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead and into an inheritance that is imperishable, uncorrupted, and unfading, kept in heaven for you.” - 1 Peter 1:3-4
During the Christmas season there seems to be a more evident and fresh feeling of hope in the air. There is extended time with family, presents to give and receive, more gifts and money given to those in need, cheerful music and so on. Most of us look forward to these things all year.
As a coach, I also notice this hope-filled feeling in our team right before each game. Leading up to the game we have practiced hard and prepared, and now the score’s 0-0. We have the hope of playing well and getting a victory.
As Christ-followers, we have a constant hope that we can lean on and live in regardless of the situation. When Peter wrote the book of 1 Peter, he was writing to Jewish believers who were suffering much persecution and difficulty (1:6). He reminded them that the Lord had given them a new birth through Jesus Christ and that they were assured of an inheritance kept in heaven for them. He seems to be telling them, “You may be going through very tough times, but we have a constant hope that will never die. Because our Lord defeated death, we have too. And we will have a life for eternity that will never fade away.”
What a hope to live in this Christmas season and beyond! The baby named Jesus, whose birth we celebrate every year, is the child who would later suffer and die on a cross and rise from the dead three days later to conquer sin and death on our behalf. Because He died, we can live and be saved from our sins. He is our living Hope!
His birth, life, death and resurrection are what give us something to look forward to beyond this life. When we receive Him as Savior, we are given the best gift ever: eternity with Him. What a Lord and what a life! Because of His gift to us, let’s share with those who need His love and give them the gift of our God and Father!
What are some ways you could remind others of our hope in Christ? How can you encourage them to live in it?
Make a list of ways you can show the love and this hope of Christ to your teammates/players.
- Acts 2:2-23
- 1 Corinthians 1:1-9
- 1 Peter 1:5-9