Let Every Heart Prepare

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Dear fellow disciples,

Wreaths adorn our doors. Candles shine out of our windows. Multi-colored lights are twinkling. Christmas music has been playing on the radio for weeks now; stores have been decorated for over a month. As the classic song goes, “it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.” 

There are still preparations to be made, of course. There are presents to be purchased and wrapped, cookies and special treats to be baked, greeting cards to send. (I’m a bit behind this year and haven’t yet decorated our house.)

But these are all the externals; the sideshows, really, to the main event. As wonderful as the nutcrackers and fruitcakes and trees with tinsel are—and they sure can bring a touch of happiness to a dreary December day—we know that they are not the essence of Christmas. I confess that I forget that sometimes. I get caught up in the nostalgia, the “tales of the glories of Christmases long, long ago.”

These weeks leading up to Christmas–the season of Advent–provide us with the opportunity to do more than prepare our homes with the garland, lights, sounds, and aromas that delight the eye and the ear and the nose. This season calls us to prepare our hearts for the good news: “Joy to the world, the Lord is come!” 

Preparing one’s heart is tough work. You thought untangling the mess of Christmas lights was a job—try working out the tangled knot of your heart! Where does one even start?

With our ears attuned to round-the-clock Christmas music bearing the message of peace and joy, we might be a bit shocked by the call of the prophets Isaiah and John the Baptist: “Repent!” It is repentance to which the Spirit calls us and by which the Spirit would form us and prepare us for receiving Jesus the Christ. In the midst of all the preparations we must make in this season, I pray that we may be attentive to the Spirit’s call to “let every heart prepare Him room.”

Preparing with you for the coming of Jesus,
Pastor Mike

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