Fresh Hope – 24th December 2020

Christmas in 2020 is going to be a very unique one. On second thoughts, maybe not that unique, but actually quite similar to the very first Christmas in that stable in Bethlehem. Mary and Joseph would have been filled with a sense of fear and isolation, the same feelings that are surrounding a lot of people this Christmas Eve.

I can only imagine Joseph’s fears and anxieties about being a midwife, the fear of King Herod’s soldiers searching for them, anxieties about becoming a first time dad to a child who was anything but ordinary, and the cultural pressures at the time of being a father to a child who wasn’t his biologically.

From these, His first few moments on earth, until the days of the denial by Peter and His death on the cross, there were many instances throughout Jesus’ life where the people around Him, those who believed and trusted in Him went through isolation, afraid of something or someone that was going to kill them.

In another instance, in John 11 vs 7-16, Jesus and his disciples have fled from, and are hiding from people who had attempted to kill them. The disciples are trying to dissuade Him from leaving their safe environment and going to the town where Lazarus has died, but Thomas says “Let us also go, that we may die with him.”

Jesus says let us go so that you may believe, Thomas says let us go so that we may die.

Such a contrast, but the disciples are actually convinced to go by what Thomas said, not what Jesus said. Whose words are you believing and relying on at this time?
On the face of it, Thomas’s words are simply the words of one who did not want to see a close friend suffer and die alone whilst they remained safe and unharmed.

But Jesus can use anything for our good, and He uses Thomas’s words to remind us that although we are in a time of fear and trepidation, the only way out is to continue walking into the unknown with Christ. By letting trust in our own strength and abilities die, we will see Jesus work miracles in our lives.

From the isolation and fear of that first Christmas Eve, Jesus was revealed to the world. Choose faith, choose hope, this isolated Christmas, and Jesus will be revealed anew to you.

Noble Mudenha

A daily devotion for a better way of living.