The word ‘Advent’ simply means ‘to come’ and as we’ve already looked at those who were waiting for Jesus throughout the Old Testament and God being with us here today, we’re now back at the waiting.
We’re waiting for Jesus to come again.
Looking forward to that glorious day when the King will come to enthrone His kingdom here on earth as in heaven; where his life and hope and shalom will fill every part of everything and there will be no more death.
I don’t know about you, but sometimes that day seems a long way off.
As I look around at the world, I don’t see a lot of light. Our newsfeeds are full of human trafficking, stories about terrorists committing atrocious acts and the threat of global illness epidemics. Or, closer to home, there is loss and shame, hurt, anger…the list goes on.
So, in the face of all this darkness, in this time of waiting for Jesus to come again, what do we do?
Well, we live like the Kingdom is already here. Because it is, in part.
Jesus Kingdom is both NOW and NOT YET. It has been inaugurated, but not fully established (that happens when he comes back). The Kingdom of God is seen in part, but then one day we shall see fully.
Until that day, we live like the light that Jesus left in the world to continue his work.
We love and serve and commit ourselves to making our world different and better.
That word, shalom, means completeness or wholeness; everything is in its right place. We live to make that a reality. Right in the midst of our waiting for Jesus’ return we start putting things right.
Our waiting is not simply sitting around doing nothing; it is an active live-like-the-King-is-here waiting. So where you see something broken, fix it. Where you see something out of place, put it right. When you see people who are lonely or hurting or in pain, get alongside them and love them
You see, even the dimmest light shining in the darkness makes a difference.
The Light of the World has come – our task is to reflect that light into a dark world.
So, this Christmas time, as advent comes to an end, be reminded of the Jesus who was, the Jesus who is here with us right now and the Jesus who will come again to restore all things to himself; wait expectantly, that one day we can cry out:
“Look! Look! God has moved into the neighborhood, making his home with men and women! They’re his people, he’s their God. He’ll wipe every tear from their eyes. Death is gone for good—tears gone, crying gone, pain gone—all the first order of things gone.”
And we can hear Jesus respond:
“Look! I’m making everything new.”