Do you ever say that? The phrase works in many different contexts; hunters use it, shoppers use it, parents use it and kids use it, because we all have hopes. If we are honest, we often have more hopes than certainties. Our plans are so fragile because our lives are fragile. Sickness, weather, entropy and the choices of others all affect our personal hopes and desires. The first theme of the Advent Season is hope and we plan to study this subject this coming Sunday. The problem with the word hope is definition. The Bible word for hope and the English word hope are not identical. The English word refers most often to our expectations and desires. The Bible word refers to fixed realities that are rooted in the character and promises of God. For example, we don’t know for sure what 2024 will be like. We don’t know for sure how these wars in Ukraine and Gaza will end. We don’t know for sure what our economy will be like in years to come. However, we do know for sure that Jesus died and rose again. We know that our sins are forgiven through faith in Him. We know that because He came the first time, He is coming a second time. We know that God is faithful. We know that God keeps His promises. If we read the Word, we’ll be able to find many things that we can know for sure. These are the realities that we build our hope upon. I’m not suggesting a wholesale shift in the use of our words. I am suggesting that we arm our minds with Biblical hope and I trust this Advent Season will equip us to do that—and help others do the same.