Christmas Shines Through You
And details about a fun new chat feature!
Are you enjoying Christmas music? I made an hour-long collection of some of the most favorite holiday songs I’ve recorded and put them all together with a cozy fire and some inspirational thoughts — watch it free on YouTube here!
Find more of my Christmas music here - on Spotify - or Apple Music
I don’t know about you, but sometimes I feel like there’s just gotta be something more to this life than what I’m experiencing. There are many days when I feel things so deeply, so intensely. I feel the pain in life, the uncertainty, the fear, the confusion, the loneliness, and everything in me desires for it to be different. There is something in me that says, “This all could be different and it probably should be.”
The difference between the way things are and the way I desire them to be creates a crazy dissonance within me, because I hope.
I hope for things to be better, for things to make sense, for things to have some purpose. Do you ever feel this way?
But Really, What is Hope?
I’d hate to have this week pass and have anyone think that hope is some kind of out-there, crazy, intangible thing that only the happy people can possess. I don’t think it is. I believe that hope is very real and that God places hope in our hearts to help us keep going, to help us keep taking the next step.
This hope allows us to look at the world, other people, and even ourselves with great, open-handed anticipation. For me, this hope has to be rooted in my faith in a loving God. Hope lets go of the intense desire to control life’s circumstances, and instead, believes the goodness of God will best reveal itself when I’m surrendered.
Hope trusts that things can be better, things will make sense, and things have great purpose, even if we can’t see it now.
Hope invites us into the crazy dissonance of life to see how we can play a part in making things better.
Hope looks for the places where light is breaking through the darkness, points to it and says, “I see the light! I see it! Can you see it, too?” Hope also seeks out the places where we can bring light and love into places that need it most. We don’t squander the light and love that’s been gifted to us.
Take a look at all the lights around you this Christmas. To me, this is one of my most favorite parts of the holiday. Everything takes on a magical twinkle. Imagine if we lived our lives that way—letting our own unique and authentic light shine so that other people see more of the beauty of the world. That’s what I’m trying to do!
I pray this holiday season is a continual reminder of the light that came into the world in the form of a tiny baby, bringing life and love to us in a way we can understand. And that it inspires you to shine on, baby. Shine so bright that people wonder how much light, love, and life could actually be contained in one person.
Today I’m announcing a brand new addition to my Substack publication: a super fun subscriber chat.
This is a conversation space in the Substack app that I set up exclusively for my subscribers — kind of like a group chat or live hangout. I’ll post short prompts, thoughts, and updates that come my way, and you can jump into the discussion.
To join our chat, you’ll need to download the Substack app, now available for both iOS and Android. Chats are sent via the app, not email, so turn on push notifications so you don’t miss conversation as it happens. You can also choose to receive my posts via the mobile app, email, or both, whatever you prefer.
I’ll meet you there! I’ve just launched a thread discussing the hope of Christmas. I look forward to seeing your thoughts!
How to get started
Download the app by clicking this link or the button below. Substack Chat is now available on both iOS and Android.
Open the app and tap the Chat icon. It looks like two bubbles in the bottom bar, and you’ll see a row for my chat inside.
That’s it! Jump into my thread to say hi, and if you have any issues, check out Substack’s FAQ.