Advent Series #1: Anticipation
As we approach Christmas and celebrating the Lord’s coming, make ready your heart.
“He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, for he will be great in the sight of the Lord..."(Luke 1:14)
As a child, you might remember getting an advent calendar or maybe you had some other way in your family of intentionally anticipating the celebration of Christmas. With our children, we used to count sleeps to Christmas. Things like the decorating of the tree, the Christmas parties, the time with family, all add to this sense of anticipation. We begin our Advent series by looking at the responses of Mary, Elizabeth and Zechariah in the lead up to the birth of Jesus. This week, it is Zechariah at the temple.
After 400 years of no prophetic voice to Israel, the capture and occupation of Rome, people were looking for a sign. As we read through Luke’s gospel, we see God move upon everyday individuals rather than on a world stage. Faithful followers serving and living in their own homes and villages. But through them, all history changed. Zechariah, a priest serving the Lord at the temple by burning incense. We know that he had been praying that he and his wife, Elizabeth, would have a child. This must have been a prayer over many years because they were old. God uses this faithful couple to be the voice before the Lord.
“He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, for he will be great in the sight of the Lord….And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the parents to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of righteousness—to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” (Luke 1:14,15a,17 NIV)
As we approach Christmas and celebrating the Lord’s coming, make ready your heart. Turn to him, to restore relationships in family and communities, to walk right with God and anticipate not only his incarnation, but his coming again.
Make ready your heart today.