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Traditions Of Hope
Published on: December 16, 2016

anthony-christmas-treeHope came to mankind at the first Christmas, in a very small town far away, called Bethlehem. It was not a shallow I-hope-you-get-everything-on-your-list-this-year kind of hope.  In fact, this hope is not an it, it’s a He. He became hope for all of mankind when He was born that night in a lowly stable. He is the hope that has endured for all of mankind for over two millennia. Let’s look for a moment at how we can remember old traditions of hope and create new traditions of Hope.

Spiritual Traditions

At its core Christmas is about the birth of the Messiah. To celebrate His birth is a tradition of hope, because He is our hope. Our kids and grandkids get so excited to see the lights and to open their presents. To see the delight in their eyes reminds us of what we as grandparents hold so dear, the hope of a good future for every one of them.

Our grandchildren are the central reason we celebrate the birth of the One who would change the world, and give our grandchildren the hope of eternity without tears or sorrow. Look for opportunities to create new spiritual traditions this year.

My grandson Anthony loves to watch the SuperBook video story of the first Christmas. We love it because it teaches him that it’s not just about Santa bearing gifts, but its about the tiny baby in the manger bearing hope. Let His gift of hope and love stir in you as you look through the eyes of your children and grandchildren this Christmas. Create a new tradition of hope in this holiday they can carry into all their Christmases to come.

Emotional Traditions

Many get depressed on holidays because they focus on what they don’t have, rather than keeping their eyes on the Hope of Bethlehem. It is at this time that we can find our greatest joy in the eyes of our little ones, no matter what else we think we have failed to achieve. Create a new emotional tradition this year by recounting your best memories for your grandchildren.

If you feel down, reach out to someone and cheer them up. What you give away will come back to you, pressed down and running over. Make His gift to you, your gift to others.  What you say to someone else will be echoed back to you later in your own heart. Give them a thread of hope they can weave into their lives, and you have weaved a whole spool of hope back into your own.

Physical Traditions

The glowing lights on the tree remind us He has an eternal glory for us. The gifts under the tree remind us of all the gifts God gives us all through.

The tree reminds us baby Jesus began his journey in a manger made of wood and ended His journey on a cross made of wood, just so we might have hope.

We put a star on our tree every year because of the guiding star that first appeared that Holy night. It also serves as a testimony that it continues to burn in our hearts as we set our hope on Him who was first born under its beam.

Be a star to someone this Christmas. Shine your light by giving hope to someone through words or a random act of kindness. Remember, this time of year is not about you. It’s about a world that so desperately needs what you have, the faith, hope, and love that was born that night in Bethlehem.

Start a new tradition this year. Perhaps your kids will want to sing and dance in the kitchen to Mariah Carey’s Christmas CD and you’ll want to join in.

New Traditions

Life can be difficult and challenging so I challenge you this season look for a new tradition of hope by doing what He did, be a conduit of hope to those around you.

img_2908As Linus said in Charlie Brown’s Christmas, “And the angel said unto them, Feat not: for, behold, I bring you tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.”

Share some of your traditions, old and new, in our comments section. Perhaps you will be the difference for someone who needs a word of hope. And, have a blessed Christmas with your grandchildren!