Hope and Expectation

It is Advent again, the time of waiting and hopeful expectation for the coming of Christ. We are in that incredible interval of time where we have hope from remembering Christ’s first coming, while we look forward in eager anticipation to when He will return.

As I recently heard the familiar scriptures of the Birth of Jesus, Mary’s response to all that occurred stood out to me as model I could follow for my Advent preparation.

Mary was honest. If she had a question, she asked. (“How can this be, since I am a virgin?”)

Then, she listened, and connected with the Lord. Mary had a relationship with God, and took time to be quiet while she conversed with Him.

After hearing what the shepherds said, she “treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.” How many times have I had something I’ve talked to the Lord about, and then didn’t take the time to listen for the answer, so I could keep the conversation going, so I could treasure and ponder things in my heart?

Mary was obedient. “I am the Lord’s servant. May it be to me as you have said.” She knew God and trusted Him. Because she put Him first, she was able to let her soul glorify Him. Her spirit rejoiced in Him, because she took the time to know Him and love Him.

It takes time to practice being obedient to the small things, so our hearts can be ready to do anything He asked because of our love for Him.

There are few times in the Bible that Mary’s words show up, but they all show who she was. She was concerned for others and was keenly aware of what their needs were. She noticed that there was no more wine at the wedding at Cana, and she brought it to her Son’s attention. Her direction to the wine stewards is a good word to us- “Whatever He says to you, do it.”

Each Advent, we have the chance for new life, and new hope, if we look to Him and prepare our hearts.

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