The first Advent was a miraculous and spectacularly transcendent time when God humbled himself to the form of a baby to save his people.
And we remember this incarnation at Christmas.
But there's something more that we remember: if there's a first Advent, there must be a second Advent.
God is coming back to us again. But not away in a manger on an unimpressive silent night. Jesus is coming back in a blaze of glory to judge the world and usher his people into a new, better, greater kingdom.
Now that's hope.
When we look around at the world all dim and black and bleak in the dark, we know that the Sunrise from on high will visit us again. And there will be no more waiting, no more hope deferred. The second Advent will end the night for good and awaken us eternally to the light of the glory of God.
Everything will be better that day. There will be no more sin, shame, tears, terror, greed, immorality, or idolatry.
All there will be is goodness and endless fun and unchecked joy and food better than anything you've ever tasted and limitless curiosity and strong, perfect bodies and an eternity to bask in the beautiful glory of God as we commune with perfect people and enjoy life together as it was meant to be.
As Kenneth Swetland writes,
In the Second Advent, the Great King is coming again to establish the Eternal Kingdom with all its perfection and glory. We live daily in this hope.
As you drink coffee today and sit at red lights and eat dinner and work and play and listen to Christmas carols, live in this hope.
Jesus is coming again.