Tickell Expressions

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Advent - Day 2

"Comfort, comfort my people," says your God. (Is.40:1)

During this season of Advent I long to bring comfort to those who have suffered loss and sorrow this past year. Many feel excluded and alienated by the Christmas celebrations going on around them.

I think of the woman who desperately tried to revive her darling husband of many years, and failed; the big-hearted family who are struggling to meet their basic needs; the young mother whose husband took his own life; and my mind is ever on the couple who held their dying three-year-old in their arms for the very last time on this earth.

I have known suffering too, though others have suffered more. Seven years of intense stress, heaped with sorrow upon sorrow, when I could not even sense the Lord’s presence in the ways I had known him before, were like a wilderness where hope was nearly impossible to grasp. Whenever I did begin to lay hold of it, it was cruelly ripped from my hands. My husband said to me once, “It’s like you died when _____ happened.”
Now that I stand on the other side of that wasteland -- where joy has returned and my dreams are renewed -- I see tiny white blossoms where my bruised feet had trod. They are precious flowers which can bloom in no other place than the highway of suffering. My prayer is that their fragrance would waft up hope to weary souls and the softness of their petals would comfort hearts bowed down in grief.
A voice of one crying in the wilderness, "Prepare ye the way of the Lord; make straight in the wilderness a highway for our God." (Is.40:3)
Here is my Christmas wish: That I could be a voice calling to those in the wilderness of suffering and bereavement:

"There is Hope. Your God has not abandoned you and He never will. You will get through if you don’t give up. You will live again. You will smile and you will laugh. And, yes, you will even dream again. The Saviour came and this Gift of Christmas is especially for you who grieve and suffer. Draw near to the Advent altar and find a restorative for your souls."
The Christmas season is deeper and sweeter for me since I learned to embrace the sorrow as well as the joy in its message. For you precious ones who are in the midst of suffering right now, I pray you will find your own place in the Christmas story. You belong too.

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon me (Jesus) because the Lord has sent me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners," (Is.61:1)

Thank you for visiting my blog today. If I have given hope to even one person I am very glad. Wherever you are at in your life, I pray that God blesses you and that you experience His great love for you this Christmas. You are beautiful and you are loved.

Blessing hugs,


Angela Hoynes said...

A wonderful message today, one so many need to hear. Bless you for writing it xx

DebR said...

Wonderful message of hope Teresa. Thank you for sharing your sufferings and hope with us.

Shawna Rash said...

Oh, Teresa, you also have fulfilled this beautiful scripture in Isaiah in this most beautiful post and I am sure every life you touch! Your words have deeply touched my own spirit tonight with the beauty of HOPE! Thank you for sharing! Such sweetness always flow from hearts that have suffered much...when they look to Jesus to carry them through. Your life is a "sweet fragrance" to the Lord!