Gifts of Advent: Hope in Two Songs
December 2021

Advent is a season of reflection but also of anticipation. It means “coming” or “arrival”. For the Church, it means the arrival of Christ. Oswald J. Smith said, "We talk of the second coming. Half the world has never heard of the first." This month we are reflecting on the first advent and remembering some moments when our missionaries experienced the gifts of hope, love, joy, and peace on the field as they prepare for and anticipate the second advent.

Gifts of Advent: Hope in Two Songs  

Imagine the excitement that Mary experienced as she anticipated the arrival of Jesus, the advent of a long-awaited Messiah. An angel, Gabriel, appears to her and tells her that she will be the one to carry and deliver this gift to the world. She believes God will do this and while visiting Elizabeth she sings a song of praise for what God has done. Though Jesus has not been born yet, she sings as though it has already happened. God was fulfilling his covenant promise of mercy to Israel and the world through the arrival of the Messiah that she carried in her womb. So it is with great hope that she sang, “He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his offspring forever” (Luke 1:54-55). 

In 2021, a team in Siberia is experiencing a similar gift of hope as they work with the Buryat people and the Buryat are singing a similar song to Mary’s! Among the Buryat, it’s the older generation that’s coming to Christ. This is important because “...if grandma and great aunt and uncle become believers, the younger ones will pay attention” Daniella, a team member, said. They realized that, “The Buryat needed their own songs, in their heart language, to connect with the influential older generation.” Thus, the Praise Workshop was born! Now the Buryat are singing their own song of hope with their own instruments and in their own language! The song is called “Under the Protection of the Most High, Ps. 91” and the chorus is translated as, “The God Most High is the Living God. He holds me in the palm of His hand. My faith, my hope are in Jesus, the Lord.” The team hopes that the older generation will connect with Jesus through making their own songs and that this will lead to younger generations also coming to know Jesus. The Praise Workshop is a step in that direction and “a true miracle [they] didn’t even dream of even five years ago!” 

As you think about these two songs of hope, how is God giving you hope in this season?

Get more details about this story of hope from our blog from last AprilSongs of Hope in the Heart Language, and be sure to watch the video of their song, “Under the Protection of the Most High, Ps. 91” there too!  

Click here to see other Praise Workshop videos on their YouTube channel.

We welcome you to Eurasia, a land where we see God bringing people out of the darkness of their Communist past and into his glorious light! Learn more about SEND’s teams in Eurasia.

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