Merry Christmas everyone!
Though our world is in turmoil and the future in many ways uncertain, the light of the gospel gleams as brightly as ever; and one day–in his own time and by his grace–the Savior who came to redeem us will return to make all things new. “Even so, come Lord Jesus.”
I hope and pray that this Christmas you will be comforted and fueled with hope by the glorious truth expressed in this hymn by Horatius Bonar called “The Church Has Waited Long”:
The Church has waited long,
Her absent Lord to see,
And still in loneliness she waits,
A friendless stranger she.
Age after age has gone,
Sun after sun has set,
And still in weeds of widowhood,
She weeps a mourner yet.
Saint after saint on earth
Has lived, and loved, and died;
And as they left us one by one,
We laid them side by side;
We laid them down to sleep,
But not in hope forlorn;
We laid them but to ripen there,
Till the last glorious morn.
The serpent’s brood increase,
The powers of hell grow bold,
The conflict thickens, faith is low,
And love is waxing cold.
How long, O Lord our God,
Holy, and true, and good,
Wilt Thou not judge Thy suffering Church,
Her sighs, and tears, and blood?
We long to hear Thy voice,
To see Thee face to face,
To share Thy crown and glory then,
As now we share Thy grace.
Should not the loving bride
Her absent bridegroom mourn?
Should she not wear the signs of grief
Until her Lord return?
The whole creation groans,
And waits to hear that voice
That shall her comeliness restore,
And make her wastes rejoice.
Come, Lord, and wipe away
The curse, the sin, the stain,
And make this blighted world of ours
Thine own fair world again.
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