Last week we defined ADVENT as the arrival of a notable person, thing, or event.
We further defined the meaning of ADVENT as it applies to Christmas.
“The anticipation of Jesus’ birth at Christmas time and the preparation we do as Christ followers for His second coming.”
So, given all of these definitions, we know that the first part of what we are “anticipating,” is more of a preparation of our hearts to celebrate the amazing event that already occured over 2000 years ago. However, the second part, Jesus’ return, we do not know the length of time before its’ occurrence. This can make the anticipation difficult.
How do we wait when there is no end date? How do we sustain our faith when time seems to be endless? How do we stay positive when the arrival feels out of reach?
We take our example from a righteous and blameless couple before God; Zechariah and Elizabeth. We encounter them up close and personal in Luke’s Gospel chapter 1, in the first 25 verses.
The scriptures tell us that this couple was “advanced in years,” and “had no child.” To be childless in ancient Judaism was seen as a sign of reproach or sin. This couple had endured many years of social shame and disappointment. To compound the struggle they were enduring, they also had been living with 400 years of silence from God!
For over 400 years, God had not spoken to His people through a prophet or any other way. Yet this couple served God faithfully while they anticipated God’s Savior for His people. What a beautiful example this couple lived!
So we ask, How do we wait when there is no end date? We live a life of righteous obedience to our God even as our years advance and our prayers have not yet come into completion! That’s how? Is it hard? You bet it is! But God gives us faithful examples to follow as we wait.
The amazing part of Zechariah and Elizabeth’s story is they were able to experience the long awaited anticipation of their lives. God spoke to Zechariah, ending His four hundred year silence, and told him that, even in their old age, he and his wife Elizabeth would have a son, and that son would grow up and be filled with The Holy Spirit.
“And you, my little son, will be called the prophet of The Most High, because you will prepare the way for The Lord.” Luke 1:76
The long anticipation they had endured would come to a beautiful fulfillment.
First through their son John, and then through God’s Son whom John would announce.
“You (John, my little son,) will tell His people how to find salvation through forgiveness of their sins. Because of God’s tender mercy, the morning light from heaven is about to break upon us, to give LIGHT to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, and to guide us to the path of peace.”
ANTICIPATION CAN INCREASE OUR FAITH IF WE CONTINUE TO BE OBEDIENT TO GOD THROUGH IT!
What a wonderful way for God to break His silence and bring forth His Salvation plan for the world!
Let’s commit to be faithful to God as we anticipate His birth and second coming!
HE WILL HAVE THE LAST WORD!
Speak Truth Love