As I wrote earlier this week, many Advent devotionals begin December 1st. Are you ready?
The words “let every heart prepare Him room” are familiar Christmas carol lyrics. Have you ever given them much thought? Yes, if we have received the gift of salvation, we have salvation through Christ, Jesus in our hearts. But, have I prepared room in my heart for the coming of Christ? Is their room in my heart for Him daily to move around at His will, to transform my thoughts, to rearrange my behavior to center around Him, etc.? I wonder…
Thomas Kinkade answers the question, “How do we prepare Him room?”
“By cleaning out our inner lives, deliberately putting away the resentments and the distractions that clutter our hearts and minds, and by giving a priority to forgiveness and reconciliation in this season of relationships. By rearranging our obligations to make sure there’s room for prayer and reflection in the midst of all the busyness. By decorating our hearts with thoughts and attitudes that are worthy to welcome a king – love and joy and peace – and by decorating our lives with loving deeds.
Most of all, by setting aside the time and the space for inner preparation – time to read and listen, time to pray, time to ponder. Time to reflect on what it means that the One whose name is Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Prince of Peace…still came in the form of a tiny, vulnerable human child. Let every heart prepare Him room.”*
In John 8:37, Jesus spoke the following to His accusers, “You are ready to kill me because you have no room for my Word.” How I would dread hearing those words. I ask myself, “Do I have room in my life for His Word?”
In the Message, Col. 3:2 reads, “Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up and be alert to what is going on around Christ – that’s where the action is. See things from His perspective.”
2 Tim. 4:8 says that there is in store a crown of righteousness for those who “long for His appearing.”
It is my prayer today that you and I would become like Mary and the shepherds in Bethlehem. Max Lucado in his book, God Came Near suggests “God goes to those who have time to hear Him – so on this cloudless night, He went to simple shepherds. At this point in history, the human being who best understands who God is and what He is doing is a teenage girl in a smelly stable.” What about in December 2012...who among us has time to hear him? Who among us understands best who God is and what He is doing? Something to think about.
As we enter the busy days before Christmas, let’s make room for God. Let’s make time to hear Him. God rarely speaks to those who aren’t listening. Pray that He’ll open your ears and eyes to find Him this Christmas. He will give you time to sit before Him if you ask Him for it. He’s out there, waiting to be sought. I believe that when we do seek Him and He is found, that He is smiling and anxious to surprise us with His gifts, which by the way are better than anything that can be bought in any store (even Target!).
Here are a few good passages to ponder:
Isaiah 9:2-7 – the proclamation!
Isaiah 61:1-11 and Luke 4:16-21 – Jesus’ job description written first in OT – fulfilled in the NT.
Read them over and over until they are engrained on your heart!
*Christ, Light of the World