Wednesday, December 4
Romans 15:4-13
There was a man who had dealt with addiction for a large part of his life. He had found help in a community of people who weren’t afraid to admit they needed help. They spoke about a higher power. He wondered, “Who or what is this higher power? What does that have to do with my life?”

Paul is helping the Gentiles in Rome see how God planned to include them in the salvation offered in Jesus Christ. “You’re included,” Paul is saying, “through your faith in Jesus. This was always God’s plan. Jesus is God’s gift of hope.”

The man in the story discovered he was included, too. Some Christians shared their stories with him. He received the gift of God’s grace in Jesus and experienced the joy and peace that come from believing. By the power of God’s Spirit, now he too has hope.

God who makes wrong things right, help us to trust Jesus as our leader and God of hope, remind us today that no matter our circumstances, we always have hope in you. Fill us with the joy of knowing that nothing can separate us from your love. Help us be aware of others in our lives who might need to hear about this gift of hope we have in Jesus. Amen.

From O Come, O Come Emmanuel, a publication of Luther Seminary. Used with permission. You may download O Come, O Come Emmanuel via this link. If you subscribe to Luther Seminary’s God Pause, you will receive O Come, O Come, Emmanuel in your email inbox each day of Advent. If you’re not a God Pause subscriber, sign up here and select “God Pause Daily Devotions.” You’ll continue to receive daily God Pause devotions, written by Luther Seminary alumni, after Advent ends.

Writers: Michael Binder ’17, Affiliate Faculty in Congregational Mission and Leadership; Amy Marga, Associate Professor of Systematic Theology. Theological Editor: James L. Boyce ’71, Professor Emeritus of New Testament and Greek. Cover photo by Elizabeth Explores on Unsplash.