Posted by: District Elder Andrew Latorcai
1 Corinthians 16: 22 “If anyone does not love the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be accursed. O Lord, come!”
The official time of Advent is upon us. The month of December, before Christmas, has been known as the time of Advent; waiting for Christmas. This means different
things to different people. Christmas is a time of being together with family and friends, giving and receiving gifts, music, celebrating festively. Advent is known as the time when children have their Advent calendars filled with little chocolates behind every window. But where is the “real” Advent? Where is the real waiting and hope in the coming of the Lord Jesus?
One of the documented meanings of Advent is the arrival of someone notable. Even at Jesus’ birth, there were not many expecting Him although He was prophesied about for hundreds of years beforehand. A few shepherds, a few angels, a few wise men…, even the King at the time saw Him as a threat and not as a vehicle of divine love, peace, joy, and salvation. This was and remains the intention of God. To bring these divine gifts to all the world and to each individual soul. But, mankind wants something else; they strive for earthly, temporal goods like wealth, power, glory, and comfort. That is what they value. Today, what God wants to give and wants to bring may be seen as a threat to this lifestyle and ambition.
Jesus is waiting as we are waiting for His imminent arrival. Because we know Him and value Him and want eternal life with Him, we actively also hope, prepare, and wait for His coming. What does this mean?
- We are excited! We are filled with joy and hope for our salvation, redemption, and to experience eternal life. Our hope is that nothing else that we live through in life will weaken this feeling. This also means that we do not give up when it gets too difficult and the journey seems too long. Let us allow God to shape our journey by grace that clearly our path leads to the coming of Christ.
- We prepare! The act of preparing entails many aspects. It means to put things in order. It means to change or adapt. It means to take seriously what needs to be done before an event. To be faithful and true to our part. This shows that we value God and our life with Him.
- We look forward! This means that we align all of our activity to preparing for Christ’s return. We actively pray and hope that Christ will come soon. This also is reflected in not putting off what needs to be done. We do what is necessary today.
We constantly and continuously live in the time of Advent. Not just in December and not just before Christmas. Let us fulfill God’s expectation of us in our preparation for eternal life. He has been faithful to His part, we need to ensure we are faithful to ours. May our approach to this event be the response to the Apostle Paul’s encouragement, “Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (cf Romans 15: 13)