Day 1

December 3

Isaiah 9:6-7

6 "For a child has been born for us, a son given to us; authority rests upon his shoulders, and he is named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. 7 Great will be his authority, and there shall be endless peace for the throne of David and his kingdom. He will establish and uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time onward and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this."

Our Everlasting Hope

by Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D.

The world today hungers for the light of Christ. We need the hope of salvation in Jesus, and during Advent we turn our faces toward the Star of Bethlehem in anticipation of Christ’s transformational presence in our lives. As Isaiah 9:6 states, “For a child has been born for us, a son given to us.”

As Christians, in addition to seeking our own individual renewal, we are called to share the power of hope within our communities of faith and throughout the surrounding world. Indeed, we are called to devote ourselves to the establishment of the Kingdom of God and to demonstrate a Christ-like compassion for one another.

God continues to bless Baylor University as we strive to fully achieve our potential to serve as his hands and feet in the world. As a Christian institution of higher learning, we are reminded during this season of Advent of our institutional roots in serving the church (Pro Ecclesia) and the broken world surrounding us (Pro Texana) with faithfulness.

When I read Isaiah 9:6-7, I am filled with a powerful appreciation of the many aspects of God’s love and omnipotence. This scripture tells us our Savior has several names — “Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” — and there is no end to what his greatness can do. He has changed my life forever, filling me with awe at the “zeal of the Lord.”

This passage of scripture also promises an “endless peace” established by the Lord, assuring us that ours is a God of justice and righteousness. As Christians, we worship an omnipotent God whose power is absolute and everlasting. His presence in the created world, and in our individual lives, is unbounded and eternal.

My hope is that this Advent will be especially meaningful to you and your family. And my joy during this time of expectant waiting and hopeful preparation for the celebration of the birth of Jesus lies in knowing that the Baylor Family is bound together with unceasing love for one another and by our unifying faith in God.

About the Author

Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D.

Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D.

Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D., is the 15th president of Baylor University, having served in that capacity since 2017. During her tenure as president, Dr. Livingstone has overseen the development of Baylor’s strategic plan, Illuminate, which provides a foundation for Baylor’s aspiration to become a preeminent Christian research university. In addition, she has led Give Light, a $1.1 billion comprehensive philanthropic campaign that undergirds Illuminate, reaching the campaign’s fundraising goals well before its anticipated conclusion.

Enhancing the University’s academic enterprise has been a key priority of Dr. Livingstone’s leadership. She is animated by a desire to build upon Baylor’s historic strengths and increase undergraduate and graduate educational opportunities while expanding the University’s service to the surrounding world through research and scholarship. Through the philanthropic generosity of the Baylor Family, the University has added more than 30 new fully endowed chairs to the faculty since her arrival. In addition, 100 new faculty lines will be created over the course of five years in support of Illuminate’s goals.

As a result of Dr. Livingstone’s dynamic and collaborative leadership, the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education designated Baylor a Research 1 university in December 2021 – its highest classification – three years earlier than internal projections had anticipated.