Advent 2016: Awaiting the King

The following reading comes from Word & Craft’s 2016 Advent Devotional. If you would like to download the full devotional, you can do so here

Read: Luke 1 & 2

 

It is easy for us to think of our King as a baby lying in a manger. Particularly during the Advent season, we can be convinced that our God is an adorable little babe, wrapped in swaddling cloths, with gentle animals grazing contentedly nearby. While this part of our Savior’s narrative is important and vital to our understanding of our God we do well to remember that though Jesus came as a child, He was a child born to be our King.

As Advent season draws to a close we look forward with great hope to the time in which our King will come again. We look back at the past 24 days of walking through God’s Word and lingering with waiting characters in the Text, but we also fix our eyes ahead on and eternal horizon, and the promise that our King will return. Though we have beheld His infant self, we look ahead to the moment when we see Him on His glorious throne. Even as we bow at his cradle side with the shepherds, we await the worship of all believers – a chorus of all people, tongues, tribes, and nations – who will gather in His holy courts and give praise to the Lamb of God.

Even as I write these words, and as you read this in your home, on the bus, or in a little coffee shop somewhere, around the throne of the King is a hoard of worshipers who proclaim day and night that He is Lord and His reign will be forever. Though this world will rob us of this vision, though we in our faithlessness will forget, though the kingdoms of this world will convince us that they are predominant and threaten to consume us, the reality of Kingdom of God is this: Jesus Christ is King, and His Kingdom will have no end.

In this life, amidst our waiting for other things, our fundamental posture as a people of God is awaiting the King who has promised to one day come for us, to one return and establish His eternal throne. Among all the things you’ve hoped, dreamed, and longed for, nothing compares to the good that will come to the follower of Jesus Christ at His return. Nothing can compare! No child compares with the Christ-Child who has been crowned King. No earthly comfort compares with the eternal rest that awaits our souls. No invitation or welcome compares to being welcomed in with the words, “well done, good and faithful servant.” No earthly redemption compares to the permanent, irreversible redemption of your person at the resurrection of the dead. No earthly fulfillment can compare with praising God in His courts on that day and singing, “Behold, the Lamb that was slain!” In light of the magnificent, preeminent, glorious King who has promised to return, all other longings fade and dim. So, do not be fooled, dear sister. When life has stretched you thin with waiting, or your spirit grows weighty with unmet hungers, call to mind the reality of the return of Christ. And when all feels stagnant around you, you can rest assured – the King is on the move.

In this great and very real hope, I wish you the merriest of Christmases.

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