Broken glass from a vandalised bus shelter spattered the ground. A shelter no longer fit for purpose. Anyone standing there would feel the full blast of rain, wind and cold air. Maybe your life in recent months has felt similarly bleak, battered and exposed to unwelcome elements.

Still intact on the end of the bus shelter was an advert. Three words stood out in bold capital letters: THERE IS HOPE. Hooray! Sounds promising. The small print revealed that hope was to be found in cooks. Cooks? Hmm… The bread I made yesterday was OK; some of my other culinary efforts wouldn’t be rated highly. Could my prowess in the kitchen bring hope? Possibly, sometimes, but its benefits would only be temporary – enough to satisfy tummies until the next meal. At the bottom of the advert was a tiny picture of a pack of butter – a delicious brand as it happens, but butter is a minuscule element of my diet. So… if not in cooks or butter, where might I find lasting hope?

In the sharp shards of a shattered world, the Bible tells us that hope is to be found in the person of Jesus Christ. He came into the brokenness of the world as a vulnerable and dependent baby. His experience of human life was like ours: joys, sorrows, life, death. The good news that gives hope to those who believe Jesus to be the risen Saviour, is that he is the mender of souls, the one who takes human brokenness and makes people whole, who comes to bring hope, who IS hope and travels with those who let him. Hope to take into 2021.

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