Greetings all, here is your e-votional for the week…
“‘But about that day or hour no one knows, neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. 33Beware, keep alert; for you do not know when the time will come. 34It is like a man going on a journey, when he leaves home and puts his slaves in charge, each with his work, and commands the doorkeeper to be on the watch. 35Therefore, keep awake—for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at midnight, or at cockcrow, or at dawn, 36or else he may find you asleep when he comes suddenly. 37And what I say to you I say to all: Keep awake.’”-Mark 13: 32-37
This coming Sunday is the beginning of Advent, our annual Christian countdown to Christmas. Tasha and I will be deviating from the traditional Advent readings this year so I thought it might be nice to include the usual first reading in your e-votional. The first reading in Advent is always about the second coming; a key Christian belief. As we prepare to celebrate Jesus’ first arrival in the world, it is important to look ahead to the second.
In this passage from Mark, we are reminded to remain vigilant as we await that day. It is of vital importance for our faith that we understand that one day, Christ will return. I have noticed that, for Presbyterians, this does not seem like something we easily come to in our hearts and minds. We rarely talk about the second coming, nor do many ask questions about it. In short, we don’t really think about it as a key part of our faith, and yet it is critical.
The promise that Christ will return not only reminds us that we live in a world where God is active and God’s plan for it inevitable, but it also adds meaning to our celebration of Christmas. In Jesus’ life, death and resurrection we get more than a nice story, we find ourselves reconciled to God in a way unknown prior. Jesus is not just about our past, and not just about our salvation, he is also about the very future of the world. Jesus spans time.
Vigilance, for us, does not mean standing outside staring at the sky, rather it means joining in the redemptive work of Christ during our time on earth. If Christ has come, and Christ will come, and Christ will make all things new in him, then we participate in that work by being his faithful disciples; by being people of faith, hope and love. Every time we follow the call of our faith and do God’s work, we actively participate in Christ’s return, just as we respond to his life as testified to in the Gospels. Thus we can see waiting, for us, is an active proposition. As we enter Advent, we wait with busy hands.
Prayer: Holy God, we thank you for sending Christ into the world, and we pray once more that your kingdom would come into this world anew, and that your grace might wash over the broken places and heal them once and for all. We thank you for the gift of our savior and we pray that he will come. Amen.