How to Wait for CHRISTmas


Staring at the brightly wrapped gifts under the plastic tree, "which one of these boxes could be the Johnny West Covered Wagon I circled in the JC Penny Toy Catalogue?" Standing in Christmas socks wondering what could be hidden in all these paper mysteries. "It's still three days until Christmas—it feels like it's never gonna get here!"

Eve made a big mess out of things—I'm not excusing Adam for passively standing by but God was so angry. She only had one comfort—He said one of her children was going to fix everything. So she waited. She waited over 900 years, then she died and was buried outside the garden.

Mary was told by an angel that her son was going to bring peace on earth and goodwill to men. She pondered that a lot—especially as she was watching Roman soldiers splatter red blood on the ground. She went to where He was buried in a garden, He wasn't there anymore, she watched Him disappear into the clouds like a glorious God. She looked around for peace and goodwill while she waited for Her son to come back and fix everything.

This Sunday is the first week in Advent. It's a time to think about waiting. We remember how Eve, along with all of God's people, waited for the promised Messiah—the one who would make things right. We remember the first Christmas, when Mary gave birth to the Son of God, the one who made a way for us to be right with His Father—we remember that day with great joy. But we also remember like Eve, because it's been thousands of years since He said He'd be right back to finish everything He set in motion the first time. 

Advent is a time to think about the arrival of Christ. God's people waited thousands of years for Jesus to make peace between God and man. God's people have been waiting thousands more for Jesus to come back and make peace between men. We live in the joyous tension between how thankful we are to be right with God and how broken we continue to be with other people. Our prayer, our hope, and our mission is "Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven."

We wait, holding the brightly hopeful promises in our heart. Is that glorious day ever gonna get here? How long will we have to keep on waiting? Love is patient and longsuffering. Advent is a time of prayer that we will never lose our childlike wonder as we stand in front of a plastic tree in our Christmas socks trying to imagine what could be inside all these mysteries. 

"He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!" Revelation 22:20

Frank Hart