Advent

Even with careful planning and meticulous time management, we can never be absolutely sure of every little thing. A lot of our time is used up waiting for something to happen or someone to come. We wait at airports for flights to depart, at our doors waiting for guests, at crossings for the traffic lights to change, in hospitals for a new baby to be born. We are always waiting for better times and better situations in our lives.

“Wait for the Lord”, is the advice we get from the Bible. And we are not to just wait, but wait in expectation. Christmas comes every year on 25 December, but preparations for Christmas begin weeks in advance. Shops and malls organise Christmas sales, families plan reunions, office employees plan their vacations, and churches celebrate advent.

The advent season is typically spread over four Sundays prior to Christmas day. Advent candles are placed on the altars. Carol singers spread festive cheer. The prophecies of the Old Testament are pondered upon. The advent period is a time of waiting in expectation for the coming of the saviour of the world. Even if the celebration of the birth of Jesus is an annual event, it is necessary to prepare for it every year. One has to make room in his heart, to clean it, to light it up, to make the saviour feel welcome.

Advent is a time for preparation, expectation and contemplation, all leading to the great finale of 25 December. However, there is another date that is known only in heaven, and kept secret from the earth. That is the Day of the Lord, when Jesus Christ will return to earth in his glory. He will not come as a humble and helpless babe, but wield power and deliver judgment on mankind. The date is unknown but as per the Bible, Christ’s second coming is certain. It is better to prepare for it, and wait in expectation.

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