Although, as I write this, Christmas is still about three weeks away, it would seem that shops, businesses, advertisements and the media have for several weeks now been encouraging us to prepare for the big event. I’m sure that most of us, to a greater or lesser extent, will already be doing all we can to ensure that this time of the year is made special for our loved ones and those we care about.
A great amount of time and trouble, to say nothing of money, is spent in preparing for what is to so many (Christian or not) the most important celebration time of the year. Lists are written, plans made, shopping done, homes prepared, cards sent, gifts wrapped, and food prepared.
For Christians, it’s important for us not to lose sight of what all the preparations are for, in that we’re celebrating the birth of our Redeemer, Jesus. And, whilst doing so, we shouldn’t miss the opportunity to share this truth with others.
Two thousand or so years ago, no one was able to prepare for the arrival of the Son of God. No one knew He was coming, except Mary and Joseph, and they were travelling. When Jesus was born, the momentous occasion in history that changed the world - the arrival of the King of kings - not a flag was in sight! Nothing was ready for Him.
Many prophecies were fulfilled when Jesus was born, although very few people were expecting Him, and even fewer prepared for Him. Much is also written in the Bible about the return of the Lord Jesus. Jesus Himself spoke about this to His disciples, saying, ‘I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am’ (John 14:3). The apostle Paul also writes about this and gives some idea of the circumstances surrounding the Lord’s return. ‘The Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout with the call of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God’ (1 Thessalonians 4:16).
The challenge for us, as we read and consider the significance of these words, is whether we are indeed expecting Him, and, furthermore, are we prepared for Him? If we definitely knew that Jesus was coming back next week, would we be behaving any differently today? What would we be saying to our families? What would we be telling our neighbours? What would we be doing in our communities? Would our church activities be any different over the next seven days? Would we be preparing ourselves and others?
As we celebrate the first coming of Jesus, and remembering the fulfilment of prophecies regarding that, let’s not forget the prophecies still to be fulfilled concerning His return – and be prepared for Him, whenever that might be.
At the end of our bibles we read, ‘He who is the faithful witness to all these things says, ”Yes I am coming soon!” Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!’ (Revelation 22:20). To which we all reply ‘Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!’
Prayer: Dear Lord Jesus, thank You for coming to earth to save us. Thank You that You promised to come back. Help us to hold on to that promise and live every day as if it was tomorrow that You were coming. Amen.
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