Sunday, December 2, 2012

Lift Up Your Heads


Luke 21:25-36

21:25 "There will be signs in the sun, the moon, and the stars, and on the earth distress among nations confused by the roaring of the sea and the waves.

21:26 People will faint from fear and foreboding of what is coming upon the world, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken.

21:27 Then they will see 'the Son of Man coming in a cloud' with power and great glory.

21:28 Now when these things begin to take place, stand up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near."

21:29 Then he told them a parable: "Look at the fig tree and all the trees;

21:30 as soon as they sprout leaves you can see for yourselves and know that summer is already near.

21:31 So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that the kingdom of God is near.

21:32 Truly I tell you, this generation will not pass away until all things have taken place.

21:33 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.

21:34 "Be on guard so that your hearts are not weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and the worries of this life, and that day catch you unexpectedly,

21:35 like a trap. For it will come upon all who live on the face of the whole earth.

21:36 Be alert at all times, praying that you may have the strength to escape all these things that will take place, and to stand before the Son of Man."

ADVENT DEVOTION--First Sunday in Advent

Advent is here! Advent means "to come." During this season we are remembering the first coming of Jesus as a baby born in Bethlehem and looking with glad anticipation to the second coming of Jesus "with power and glory."

During this CHRISTmas season, it will be easy to get stressed out. There are trees to trim, shopping to do, boxes to mail, parties to attend, and a host of expectations that seem impossible to fulfill even if time and money were no object.

Truth be told, for many people, this CHRISTmas season seems drear as they face a first CHRISTmas without a loved one, remember the passing of one long gone, look at a stack of bills they know they cannot pay, grieve over the loss of a relationship, or battle illness or depression on a daily basis.

It would be easy to just "muscle through" the season, looking forward to the ringing in of the new year, but I want to encourage all of us to do the important and life giving spiritual work of celebrating and anticipating JESUS.

When we keep CHRIST in CHRISTmas, we will be able to "stand and lift up our heads," despite the many pressures that we face. We will remember that we are never alone! We will rejoice that God loves us so much that God sent Jesus into the world to accomplish our redemption!

Today's scripture recommends that we stay alert and prayerful as we wait. This is great advice. Let's slow down, watch and pray, study our Bibles, and give ourselves permission to just sit with Jesus awhile as we free fall into the amazing grace of God!

Every time we get overwhelmed during this advent season, let us pray, "Come, Lord Jesus, Come!" As the Holy Spirit fills us with CHRISTmas wonder, we will find that we have all that we need to experience God's love, joy, hope, and peace this season.


Lord, please help me to slow down. I pray, "Come, Lord Jesus, Come," into all of the affairs of this CHRISTmas season. I am so blessed that you delight in me. How I love you! Amen.

Advent blessings, dear ones. God loves you...Pass it on.

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