The Christmas story clearly shows that the hope of the universe is a person. Hope was what the angels sang about. Hope lay in the manger. Hope caused Mary to wonder in her heart. It was hope the shepherds came to worship. Hope was presented with gifts from the Magi who had traveled so far. The Advent story is a hope story because it chronicles the coming to the earth of the One who is hope, Jesus. For a people born in sin and for a world damaged by sin there simply could not be any other source of hope. Good education would not solve the problem. Benevolent government had no power to solve the problem. More and better laws couldn’t penetrate to the source of the problem. People couldn’t help one another, and they surely couldn’t help themselves.
– Paul David Tripp
The above passage is from Paul David Tripp’s advent devotional, Come Let Us Adore Him. I have been walking through his work during the advent season and this paragraph leapt off the page at me as the Lord used Tripp’s words to further affirm the work we are doing at HOPE.
You see, we opened our doors at HOPE 20 years ago because we knew that many men and women in our community were in need. These men and women needed someone to meet them in their chaos and offer respite or hope. We did just that as we assisted them in getting through their pregnancy, their addiction, or their abuse.
Many of our patients are jaded. They have been hurt, lied to, and used by friends, family, and strangers. Some of our patients have truly lost all hope, not just in humanity, but in everything. This heartbreaking reality motivates us to act. We act because we have news for them. We have the One who is hope!!
You help us restore hope with your gifts. Today we were blessed by Fellowship Church with a trailer load of baby shower items for our patients. Last week Black Oak Heights Baptist Church hosted a benefit concert in their building for us where just over sixteen thousand dollars was raised. A few weeks ago Shoreline Church took up an offering for us and mailed us a check for fifteen thousand dollars.
I could write for days about the partnerships we have with the local church in Knoxville. The baby shower donations, the monthly monetary gifts, the prayers, and the volunteers the Church sends our way is truly remarkable. These partnerships keep HOPE operating, but they also make hope a reality for thousands of patients every single year as they intentionally invest in the lives of men and women in this city.
Because you give, we are able to look a young, scared mom in her eyes and offer her a hope that she didn’t believe existed. We are able to calm fears and anxiety by telling our patients that they are not alone and that thousands of people in this city and around this state care about them and are investing in them.
The Lord has blessed us greatly over the past 20 years. It hasn’t always been easy, but it has always been worth it. Every dollar, prayer, or hour you give will directly impact lives in this city. Thank you for helping us continue our work at HOPE so that we can point our patients to the One that is hope!
posted by Andrew Wood, Executive Director of Hope Resource Center