Preparing the Way
One curious aspect of the Scriptures we’ve read these past weeks in Advent has been the emphasis on preparing the way of the Lord. John the Baptist, the last prophet before Jesus, is described, using the language of Malachi and Isaiah, as one who prepares the way of Jesus.
This theme of preparation is a part of our experience of Advent as followers of Jesus. Through these four weeks we have the opportunity to prepare our lives and hearts to welcome and receive God’s kingdom. One of my favorite Christmas books is “Make Room,” a short children’s story about the animals in the stall preparing for the arrival of the Christ-child. They move furnishings and prepare space. Reading that book is a yearly reminder to me of the way my life can be so cluttered with the cares, comforts, and concerns of this world, that any hope and expectation for Jesus and His kingdom are crowded out. For me, part of the work of this season is engaging in practices that help to create space in mind and heart to be with Jesus, that he might have his way in my life.
As you pass through these last days of Advent, what might it mean to prepare the way of the Lord in your life? What might it mean to be, like John, a herald, preparing the way of his coming among others?
Last Sunday was very encouraging as we took in pledges and gifts toward the purchase of a new property for COTC as a future home. Thank you for your sacrificial and joyful generosity! As gifts are still coming in, we’ll announce the total early in the new year. I’m excited to celebrate with you! Our goal is to have all initial gifts in by December 31st of this year. If you haven’t had a chance to pledge or participate thus far you can give online here (use the tab to designate “New Property”).
Finally, I’m so looking forward to these next few days together. On Sunday, the fourth and final of Advent, our own Tim Wang will be preaching on Mary’s Magnificat. On Monday evening at 5pm we’ll celebrate Christmas Eve with a service of carols and candlelight (everyone is encouraged to bring some Christmas baking to share!). On Tuesday morning at 11am we’ll have a short service to rejoice and be together in celebration of the Incarnation. Lastly, on the 30th we’ll be having a Lesson and Carols service as one final Christmastide time of worship. These are all wonderful times of rich worship and community, be sure to invite friends and family!
Joyfully anticipating Christmas with you,