Advent: A Season of Waiting
Over the month of December, we are reading stories of people who waited for the Messiah to come. We are learning from them how to wait because waiting is an essential part of following Jesus. The promise of Scripture is that no one who waits on the Lord will ever be put to shame.
Daily Scripture Reading:
Sunday, December 20: Daniel 6
By faith and obedience to the Lord, Daniel was saved from the jaws of the lions. He waited in hope for the Lord's deliverance. We also need deliverance from our sin and we can wait with great hope that Jesus will indeed deliver us as well.
Lord, give us Daniel's perspective when faced with overwhelming situations. Daniel teaches us that You are truly Sovereign and that You are aware of the circumstances which we face. You are able to rescue us. You can use our faithful responses in whatever situation we are in to make Yourself known.
John the Baptist taught repentance of sins and baptized in the Jordan River. He announced the coming of the Lord to all who would listen. He proclaimed that Jesus was the Lamb of God who would take away the sins of the world.
Father, enable us to tell others about Your plan to save us. Let us proclaim, like John, that You are the One who takes away our sin.
Tuesday, December 22: Matthew 1:18-25
Matthew introduces Joseph, through whose eyes we see some different things about Mary's special child. Jesus will save the people from their sins and in Him, God will be truly present with His people.
Father, Joseph was a regular man with a regular job, yet you chose him for a special task. Despite the possible damage to his reputation, he chose to obey. When you choose us for a difficult task, help us to answer as Joseph did - with trust and faith.
Wednesday, December 23: Luke 1:26-38
Even if he is the first prophet in generations, John the Baptist is not going to be the ultimate word from God to His people. It is Mary's child, Jesus, who will fulfill the people's longing for a permanent kingdom in which there will be peace and justice for everyone. The angel announced that God would give this child the throne of his father David, and that He would reign over the house of Jacob. His kingdom will have no end!
Thank you, Lord, that Your reign is eternal. May we recognize that though we experience Your kingdom in part now, we await the day when the fullness of Your kingdom will be revealed to all.
Thursday, December 24: Luke 2:6-21
Glory to God in the highest! Proclaim the Good News! Jesus is with us! Celebrate! Rejoice! God's faithfulness is revealed. He has provided a Savior, the Messiah. This joyful news is for everyone! Luke 19:10 says, "For the Son of Man came to seek and save what was lost."
Thank you, Father, that you have gone to great lengths to make yourself known to us. We rejoice at Your coming. Empower us to share Your story of love with those who are lost and separated from You.
Friday, December 25: Isaiah 9:2-7
Hundreds of years before it actually happened, God spoke through Isaiah to reveal that His plan to rule would be ushered in by the birth of a child. Unto us a Son, a royal Son of David is given. He will reign on David's throne, establishing and upholding it with justice forever.
Father, You have shown us in this season of Advent that You are worthy of our devotion. Throughout the ages, You have continually reached out to mankind offering Your love, Your deliverance, Your redemption, Your salvation. You are the Light of the World. Let Your light shine through us so that others may see the great love You have for them. Amen!
ADVENT FOR THE FAMILY. Frederick P. and Patricia K. Auman, Fortress Press, 19789.
THE ADVENT WREATH. Debbie Trafton O'Neal, Augsburg Publishing House: Minneapolis, MN 1988.
CELEBRATE THE CHRISTIAN FAMILY. Ellen Javernick, Shining Star Publications, 1987.
CHRISTMAS IS COMING. Oxmoor House, Birmingham, AL 1988.
GROWING UP TOGETHER. Jam Kempe, Discovery House Publishers, Grand Rapids, MI 1989.
LET'S MAKE A JESSE TREE. Darcy James, Abingdon Press, Parthenon Press, Nashville, TN 1987.
LET'S MAKE A MEMORY. Gloria Gaither and Shirley Dobson, Word Books, Waco, TX 1983.
TO CELEBRATE. Alternatives, Ellenwood, GA 1987.
WHY NOT CELEBRATE! Sara Wenger Shenk, Good Books, Intercourse, PA 1987.
YOUR CHILD'S TEACHABLE MOMENTS. Wanda B. Pelphry, Moody Press, Chicago, IL 1988.
CELEBRATE! Mary Jane Thompson, VIRTUE Magazine, November 1988, p.58
THE STRANGER ON THE ROAD TO EMMAUS. John R. Cross, Good Seed International, Canada 2003.
THE NIV STUDY BIBLE. Edited by Kenneth Barker, Zondervan Bible Publishers, Grand Rapids, MI 1985.