The stories after Easter share a common thread. Jesus followers don’t always recognize him, not at first. Jesus is alive, but the Jesus who has risen is also changed. Jesus is back, but life is not exactly as it once was.
Advent is an invitation to hope. We learn quickly from Jesus that hope is not something light and fluffy. Hope takes grit. Hope means taking risks. Hope means leaning into conflict, and living with the complexity, not settling for easy answers.
In times like these, I invite you to observe this season of Advent. If this year, if recent days have been difficult, take up Advent’s practice of hope.