“This is he of whom it is written, ‘Behold, I send my messenger before your face, who will prepare your way before you.’”
Waiting patiently is more difficult for some than others. For kids during this last week of school before Christmas break, waiting can seem like a never-ending task. For children, Christmas cannot come soon enough!
But for many parents, waiting for Christmas seems less like waiting and more like running around like a chicken with its head cut off. It’s all about preparation. Parents have so much to prepare for during the days and weeks before Christmas that they barely get to enjoy the season at all. There is simply so much work to be done.
This preparation is important. We could not have the Christmas programs, the Christmas dinner, the Christmas gift exchange, or even the Christmas Eve church service without lots of preparation. However, this preparation is NOT the main event. It is only leading and guiding us toward the main event – the arrival of our Savior Jesus.
John the Baptizer came to prepare the way for Jesus. John gets everything ready. He tells us the Savior is coming. He says the wait is almost over: “Prepare yourselves – because Jesus is coming soon!” John is not the main event; he is only the preparation.
John reminds us that we too should be ready for the arrival of the Christ child. And so, during this last week before Christmas, while we wait, we prepare. We prepare by recognizing our need for a savior, by confessing our sins, and by returning to the only place where the hope of forgiveness is found – in the manger of Bethlehem.
Lord God, give us patience to wait for you. Forgive our sins and prepare our hearts to receive your grace and mercy as we eagerly look forward to the arrival of Your Son, our Lord, Jesus Christ. In his Name we pray. Amen
Contributed by Rev. Jarod Koenig