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Prepare Him Room This Advent Season

Whether you’re ready for it or not, the Christmas season is upon us. At the MacNaughton house, we’ve got our Christmas tree up, lights hung around the house, and we’re about 37 Christmas movies into December. And we haven’t even made it to December yet!

While the Christmas season is underway, the Church calendar has designated the season leading up to Christmas Day as “Advent”. The word “Advent” simply means “awaited coming” and is mostly used during this particular time of year when we celebrate the coming of a Savior. But it also helps draw our hearts to the awaiting second coming of our Savior when He will bring His church to the home He has prepared for us.

Advent symbolizes the present situation of the church in these last days (Acts 2:17, Hebrews 1:2), as God’s people wait for the return of Christ in glory to consummate his eternal kingdom. The church is in a similar situation to Israel at the end of the Old Testament: in exile, waiting and hoping in prayerful expectation for the coming of the Messiah. Israel looked back to God’s past gracious actions on their behalf in leading them out of Egypt in the Exodus, and on this basis, they called for God once again to act for them. In the same way, the church, during Advent, looks back upon Christ’s coming in celebration while at the same time looking forward in eager anticipation to the coming of Christ’s kingdom when he returns for his people.

There are four themes seen throughout the Advent Season: Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love. For the next few weeks, we will take a few moments to look at these themes together on Sunday mornings and celebrate the Savior who came to this earth and is coming again. 

Advent both reminds us of the overflowing, extravagant nature of God the Father who, because he loved us so much He sent His Son Jesus (John 3:16), has given us hope (Hebrews 6:9-20), peace (Luke 2:8-21), and joy (Luke 2:1-20). Truly, the Christmas season is an incredible opportunity to reflect on all that Christ has done for us. Without His love, we cannot love Him (1 John 4:19). Without His peace, we are still His enemies (Ephesians 2:1-10). Without His hope, we are hopeless (Romans 8:24-25). Without his joy, we have no joy (Hebrews 12:1-2).

This coming Sunday, we will share with you on the Grace Life App our 2022 Advent devotional guide for you to sit down and do with your family. You’ll have daily Scripture readings centered around the themes of Advent and a few activities to help carry the truth of Christmas home for your family. While we celebrate the coming of our Savior, we wait patiently for the second coming of our King Jesus! 

Which makes the words of this familiar Christmas song by Isaac Watts even more wonderful when we sing it as it was intended: a song about the second coming of Jesus.

Joy to the world, the Lord is come!

Let earth receive her King;

Let every heart prepare Him room

And heaven and nature sing,

And heaven and nature sing,

And heaven, and heaven and nature sing.

 

Joy to the world, the Savior reigns!

Let men their songs employ,

while fields and floods, rocks, hills, and plains, 

repeat the sounding joy,

repeat the sounding joy,

repeat , repeat the sounding joy.

 

He rules the world with truth and grace

and makes the nations prove 

the glories of his righteousness 

and wonders of his love, 

and wonders of his love, 

and wonder, wonders of his love.

 

So church, prepare your hearts. Make room for Jesus this Christmas. In fact, and better yet, make Him the central focus in all you do this Christmas. Without him, there would be no Christmas to celebrate. 

By His Grace,

Pastor Matt

advent, Christmas, God, hope, Isaac Watts, Jesus, joy, love, peace, Savior

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