Friday, December 2, 2011

Advent, Angels, and Praise!

I've been hearing a lot recently about how we shouldn't celebrate Christmas and many other Holidays. I think everyone has a right to choose for themselves. For me, I find them a time of reminder to bring us out of the stupor of living from day to day. To remind us of certain things that we might forget to do. Not because we shouldn't be doing it everyday, but because sometimes we just get in a rut and go through motions. Advent is just such a season.

It is to remind us of how we should be living every single day of our life. As we wait for the Parousai we should continue to live every day as if it were the season of Advent. Even during our 'ordinary' times, we are still just counting our days until something greater!

Luke 2:7, 13-15 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

“Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

What do we learn from above about how we should respond to the news that Jesus is returning? How about the way we should respond when we think about the fact that Jesus is already here among us in very special ways? Well the same way the angels reacted to the fact that He had been born! We should have that same anticipation, joy, excitement, and enthusiasm that others had for the birth of Christ! The angels responded by praising God! Do we do that enough? We should be praising God for having condescended as a man, and as well for promising to return for us again! How great is the promise that Jesus will return to take us to a place that He has prepared for us? Do we give God praise for that daily? In fact, shouldn't our entire life be giving God praise for that? If this life is just a small portion of our entire life, after all what is a mere 100 year span (if we are lucky) compared to eternity? Glory to God!

Secondly, how did the shepherds respond to this good news? They went to seek Him! They didn't just listen and go home to sit and watch TV. Neither did they stay right where they were watching their sheep. In fact, it doesn't say that they took there sheep anywhere or took time to make sure they were safe, they could have brought them with them? They could have even left them in the field. We are not sure! We do know that immediately upon hearing this glorious news, they immediately began searching for Jesus! Do we do that? How many of us upon hearing the gospel go home to search Him out? Or do we just leave the church and go back to our ways. Instead we should be searching Him, in prayer, in study of His Word, in the worlds through others! We can find Him in the face of the homeless, in the widow and orphan, in the prison! Whatever we do for the least of these we do for Him!

Let us use Advent as a time to seek God! A reminder that we should be seeking Him always! Let us make small changes to our life, and develop habits of seeking Him! It is a good time to begin a bible study program, or to volunteer at a shelter, food bank, or even at a prison ministry. What are some other ways you can make a difference while seeking God?

In Christ,