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  • Shawn Thornton

Hope in Love

Monday - December 14th

"Hope is Here" Advent Devotionals - Day 14

Scripture to Read Today: 1 Corinthians 13:8-13

Teach us to number our days,

that we may gain a heart of wisdom.

Psalm 90:12


If this was your final Christmas on earth, what would your last wish be? For Maddox Hyde, he wanted a Christmas card. Actually, he wanted lots of Christmas cards.


In 2010, Maddox was diagnosed at age six with neuroblastoma (a relatively aggressive type of cancer that spreads in nerve tissue). His treatments lasted for eight years until the doctors told Maddox and his parents there was not much more they could do. A friend of his mother got the idea to get some people she knew to send Maddox Christmas cards. He was so overwhelmed by the kind gesture; he asked his mom if he could make it his official Christmas wish. His mom, Kristi, began to give out their address on social media and asked folks to send Maddox a card, and his Christmas Card Wish went viral.


Maddox received Christmas cards from not just friends and family but from all over the world. Words of love and encouragement poured into Maddox's mailbox in Pittsburg.

One month after Christmas, 14-year-old Maddox Hyde passed away in the comfort of his home surrounded by his family. The cards had blessed and comforted him in his final days.


If you knew this was your last Christmas, how would that change your perspective? What would you do? What would you not do? With whom would you spend time? For what would you wish?


In Psalm 90:12, the psalmist asked God to teach him to keep a clear perspective on the days he had left on the earth. The goal of keeping count of our days is to know just how best we can use them. Singer-songwriter Chris Rice wrote in his song "Life Means So Much,"

"Teach us to count the days

Teach us to make the days count

Lead us in better ways…”


Most people who know their days will quickly come to an end, focus on relationships. To value our days means to value our relationships with people (horizontal) and our relationship with Jesus (vertical). If we can get our vertical and horizontal relationships right, we will have fewer regrets when we come to the end our days. The Bible teaches us about the nature and character of God, His unfolding plan, and how much He loves us. The more we understand God, the more we understand ourselves. The more we know how much God loves us, the more we can learn to love other people.


Have you told the people that matter the most to you how much you love them? Have you shown them how much you love them?


Who is it that needs you to say to them today, "I love you?"

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