We lit the candle of Hope for Advent this past Sunday. Hope is a big word. It can bring to mind all sorts of images. Advertisers try to catch it in the expressions of kids, lovers, and family so that you know you have gotten the perfect gift. They tie hope to our loved ones expectations which can all be fulfilled if we purchase this. Hope is bigger than that. It is born inside of our dreams and nestled into our picture of what can be in the world, in our lives, and in our loves. I think this touches onto our very real sense of not measuring up. We hope we are loved by God and then the tape plays in our mind of all the reasons we are not savable, redeemable, or lovable. They are our own standards and come from the voices that tell us we don't quite measure up. Yet the word of advent is that God chooses to love us! He chooses again and again to show his saving power to all people and dares to be born as a babe to human parents - us. It is incredible we are entrusted with God's love, come down, and born in us. Can we dare to show it to the world?