Do you ever get so involved in something that you lose touch with where you are or what day it is? Most of us do that from time to time. We can be oblivious to what is going on around us. Matthew’s account implies that we are not always alert,...
Loving God, keep me alert to the promises you have made. Embolden me to live with your gifts of hope, love, and joy written large in my life. Remind me that you give me a measure of those gifts to share with those I love, those I encounter during each day, and those for whom I pray. Amen.
Advent is a season for turning our minds to the coming arrival of the Christ child. Isaiah looks forward to a future day when peace will reign in Jerusalem. All nations will come to hear the wisdom of the Lord. The psalmist rejoices in going up to Jerusalem in his own day. Jerusalem is a center of peace and a place for righteous judgment among the nations. Both readings inform Jewish expectations of a bright future with the arrival of the Messiah. Paul tells the Romans that part of receiving the reality of the Messiah is self-preparation. We should put aside immoral living and put on the Lord Jesus Christ. Matthew looks forward to the future return of the Son of God, which will happen at an unexpected time.
Read Isaiah 2:1-5. How do you look to the Bible’s stories, prayer, and the Holy Spirit to help you work toward God’s reign?
Read Psalm 122. What does it mean for you to pray for peace?
Read Romans 13:11-14. How do you stay awake to salvation’s nearness?
Read Matthew 24:36-44. Who in your life lives as though they expect the Son of Man? What does it look like to be ready to meet Christ?
Respond by posting a prayer.