Now when John had heard in prison about the deeds of the Christ, he sent word by his disciples and said to Him, “Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another?” And Jesus answered them, “Go and tell John what you hear and see: the blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and the poor have good news preached to them. And blessed is the one who is not offended by Me.” As they went away, Jesus began to speak to the crowds concerning John: “What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind? What then do you go out to see? A man dressed on soft clothing? Behold, those who wear soft clothing are in king’s houses. What then did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you and more than a prophet. This is He of whom it is written, Behold I send my messenger before your face, who will prepare Your way before You. Truly I say to you, among those born of women there has arisen no one greater than John the Baptist. Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
The ministry of John the Baptist is validated in Christ. The hopes in John’s heart are fulfilled in the statements of Jesus, the one the world had been waiting for – who was, who is, who is to come.
Lighting the Candle of Hope
Even John the Baptist asked Jesus, “Are you the one we’ve been waiting for?”
All of the hopes and dreams of God’s children were wrapped up in that question.
And the answer was, yes, the Hope of the Nations was there, and is here.
This morning, we light the Candle of Hope.
Let this fire remind us that while we wait for the Lord, truly the Lord is already here.
Hope is here. Love is here. Family, is here.
Call to Confession
Our Lord and Our Hope, we know that we often fail you. We forget to watch. We forget to wait. We make the holiday season more about ourselves than sharing the hope that only you can bring. We get so caught up in what we’re supposed to get this season, we forget what we’re called to give. Help us to remember that this season is about the message and ministry of your son, Jesus Christ, the one who came to heal, liberate, and share the good news of your faithful love. Call us to be faithful only to you this season. Amen.