Preparation: With your Bible, journal and pen, sit in a quiet place and prepare your heart to meet God. Close your eyes and spend some time focusing on the blessings you have received from your Creator.
Read: Isaiah wrote about the judgment of God upon his people for their disobedience, but also about the hope of restoring the relationship between God and his people through the Messiah. Read Isaiah 9:1-7 with that in mind. As you read, record in your journal or highlight the phrases or words of hope that speak to your heart.
Meditate: Go back and ponder the phrases or words that you recorded or highlighted. Repeat them several times and reread the verses from which they came. Reflect upon these words and the message God has for you through them. Write out your thoughts.
Pray: Use the words of this passage to offer a prayer of praise to God for the hope of the world through Jesus Christ. As you consider these words, think also of the many places in our world where war and suffering are still the norm. Pray for God’s light to penetrate even the darkest places of injustice and suffering.
Contemplate: Consider how you might be a bearer of the light of the Gospel in your world today. What darkness can you help to dispel through your actions—through a word of encouragement, through a prayer for justice, through an act of grace? Ask God to show you the opportunities and give you the wisdom and courage to act upon them today.