Thanksgiving is a wonderful way to start the Advent Season. When we take the time to take stock of where we are in our prayer life, our understanding of God’s word, our relationships with other believers, then we are also preparing our hearts for a deeper relationship with Christ. It should be nearly impossible to stop our hearts and tongues from singing praise and worship to our King of Kings. But, many dread this season instead.
What is wrong? Our world has a seemingly unending list of demands on our time, talents, and treasure, especially during Advent. We add to the complexity by fretting about who we are going to spend time with, what are we going to eat and wear, and a hundred other mundane details. When we allow this shift, we make this season about our stuff and ourselves. We place ourselves on His throne. What’s worse is that we have a veil placed over our eyes and, though we can feel the pain of rejection, isolation, or emptiness, we can not recognize our sin. Without intervention, our sin is allowed to fester into discontent and into other sin.
Only by taking the time to sit in His presence and to listen to His small, still voice will we begin the process of recognition and repentance of our sins, so that we renounce any claim or foothold that we allowed the enemy to gain. With joy, we can receive His forgiveness knowing that we are fully cleansed of our unrighteousness. But, we must also ask the Holy Spirit to help us to make the necessary changes in our hearts, minds, and lifestyle, so that are realigned with His will. Going through this process, with the guidance of Jesus, will bring us His peace and contentment, and that is something stuff can not begin to promise.
So, what are you going to do? Take a minute to reflect. We can choose the joy of thanking and praising Our Lord and Savior for the abundant goodness and grace he provides His church or exchange our good gift for a joy-sucking secular holiday. God in His goodness allows us to make the choice.
Deb & Joan