Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Infant Holy Infant Lowly"1 (Lyrics)
On our journey of life, it is normal to be looking ahead. Sometimes, we look back and hopefully learn from mistakes that we have made, but more often, we look ahead with hope and anticipation of good things that lie ahead.
One of my twelve great-grandchildren expressed his excited anticipation in an unusual way recently. When he was told that his grandfather (my son) would be keeping him company the next day while his parents were away, Aiden became very happy with anticipation. He told his mother that he wished that tomorrow would come today!
At this time of year, with Christmas family gatherings and special occasions ahead, children get excited, especially about the part of giving and receiving presents. Waiting and counting down the days is a necessary part of the celebration.
One of the themes of Advent is waiting. People in the Old Testament waited for the coming of the Messiah to save them from their sins. Many centuries went by before Jesus came. When the wise men journeyed for weeks from Babylon to Jerusalem looking for the baby Jesus, I wonder how often they queried, "Are we there yet?"
Like that six-year-old great-grandchild, we all must wait in anticipation for the appointed time to arrive. In God's design for our lives, we live in the present but await the future. This is true for us all, whatever our age and whatever the time of life.
There is one thing, however, that we don't have to wait for and, indeed, should not wait for! God calls me and you to be reconciled with Him through accepting the sacrifice of Jesus, and we should do so now!
2 Corinthians 6:2 – For God says, "At just the right time, I heard you. On the day of salvation, I helped you." Indeed, the "right time" is now. Today is the day of salvation. (NLT)
With reconciliation with God, we can continue living life with hope. Concerns will continue to cross our path, but in everything, we can have hope. We don't need to worry because we are assured a place in heaven with God.
I do not know how long it will be until I am no longer physically here, nor do you. I am certainly past the "threescore and ten" lifespan referenced in the Bible. But it is really unimportant, since my arrival in heaven is already settled by being and remaining in Christ. I like what Paul wrote:
Colossians 1:27 – For God wanted them to know that the riches and glory of Christ are for you Gentiles, too. And this is the secret: Christ lives in you. This gives you assurance of sharing his glory. (NLT)
I also take great comfort in these words that Paul penned:
Philippians 1:21 – For to me, living means living for Christ, and dying is even better. (NLT)
You may be anticipating your life soon getting better, like little children awaiting good things. But most of all, I pray that you will be reconciled with God and remain in Christ. If you already are, then let's make sure that we spread the good news! Others need to know!
Prayer: Dear God, at this special time of year when there is so much excitement, help us to faithfully serve others by showing them how to be reconciled with You through Jesus Christ. Amen.