Holiday Cheer Already
It’s time to be in a good mood, whether you like it or not! That’s how December is marketed these days. It’s as if it is your solemn duty as an American to spend the entiremonth full of Holiday cheer, wishing everyone you speak to a “Merry Christmas,” or a politically correct “Happy Holiday.” It’s time to adorn yourself in a cheery combination of red and green that would be considered tacky during the other 11 months of the year. Besides, if you’re not in the Holiday Spirit, you’ll be labelled a Grinch or a Scrooge. It is Christmas, after all!
Only it’s not Christmas. Not yet. It’s Advent. Historically, Advent is not a time of celebration; nor is it a holly jolly joy fest. It’s a time of preparation; a time to look forward to the fact that – just as Jesus first came on Christmas morning, He will come back again on the Last Day. It’s a time to reflect on the way that we’re living and prepare our hearts for His return.
There’s not hing wrong with you if you’re not in a good mood the moment the calendar flips to December. There’s nothing wrong with you you’re sad or suffering. You might be lonely. You might be hurting. You might not have it in you to spend an entire month with a smile on your face. And that’s okay. In spite of what the Christmas music, and decorations, and Holiday cheer might imply; the world isn’t perfect. Not yet. It’s still broken. It’s still tough.
That’s why we have Advent. Advent is a time to look forward. It’s a time to reflect upon the certain hope we have that, even though things are broken now, Jesus is making things right again – and He’s on His way back to finish the job! Even though your world might feel like a mess right now, we know that God is above the mess, and He’ll make everything right again.
As Christmas approaches, you’ll picture little baby Jesus in the manger. You’ll remember how He became Emanuel – God with us. As you do, remember God’s promise to come back and dwell with us again. God makes that promise to us in Revelation 21:3-5; Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be His people, and God Himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall their be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away… Behold, I am making all things new.”
That’s God’s Advent promise to you. Even if you feel broken, bitter, sad, and alone right now; God is coming with healing, comfort, and peace. Hang in there. God is coming.