a passionate advent
The Upward Look, by Jon Forrest
A Passionate Advent
Every year at Christmas time Children around the world look forward with passionate expectation of the coming of a man who is expected to bring them the toys and gifts they desire most in their lives. A plethora of stories, poems and songs have been written about this amazing anticipation that causes their little hearts to pound with delight. I have no criticism of such passion, but I am a little bit sad that we don’t seem to approach this season with passion about the coming of someone who has far more to give each of us much more than a few beloved toys.
For thousands of years, prophets foretold, with more passion than any children every had for Santa, the coming of the Messiah, the promised one who would turn our lives right side up. He would be a suffering servant and would take all of the punishment our sins deserved upon himself. Our punishment, our stripes, and our guilt would fall on Him. He would give his life to buy us back from eternal punishment so that he could give us eternal abundant life.
Nothing has ever been more worth the wait.
We are approaching the Advent Season. Advent is a word that comes from the Latin, meaning “to come” or “the coming.” When the angels appeared to the shepherds on the night of Christ’s birth announcing the glory of the Lord and the birth of Jesus Christ (Messiah) the Lord, their joy and excitement was voluminous! Why? Because they knew the wait was over. They recognized that Advent was fulfilled, and the plan God had been working out from before the creation of Adam and Eve and before all of their ancestors had come to fruition. God was now present in the form of human life. Emanuel, “God with us” had come.
As we prepare our hearts for Advent, the coming of the Christ, we should live in a passionate expectation that would outshine that of children waiting for the coming of the bearded fat man.
Let me tell you that there is an Advent for many who do not yet know Christ. It is his coming into their hearts for the very first time. Many people desire this Advent without understanding what it means. This Advent season share your expectation with others, especially those who don’t yet know the power of the real Christmas. Tell them what Jesus means to you. Tell them what he can mean to them. Tell them that he didn’t stay in a manger as a baby. Tell them that he grew into manhood and became the sacrifice for their sins as he was for your own. Build up the excitement of Advent in everyone around you so that they will understand that Jesus really is “The Reason for the Season.”
Beginning this week, the FCC, family will begin the observation of Advent. We have daily devotional guides for you and your family that will help your season to be devoted to building His Advent in you and in others. Each Lord’s day between now and Christmas will be special. We will have families lighting Advent candles and presenting important Scripture and Prayers relating to the anticipation of the coming of our Lord. This Sunday, our friends, the gospel music group, the Texans, will lead us in a unique and powerful program that points to the coming of Jesus. In the Sunday mornings to follow, Josh and I will bring messages that connect with our daily devotional themes and will challenge our hearts to anticipate and connect with Jesus the Messiah in a special way. Share this experience with everyone you know, especially those who have not experienced Christ’s
Advent in their hearts.
Expecting His Coming,