Honest mom moment: I didn’t do ONE day of advent readings with my kids. Oh my goodness. I am so embarrassed. I usually love reading either the Jesse Tree Advent* or Ann Voskamp’s book. This year, we will probably read this book to help us see how Jesus’ birth fits into the whole Bible. But it will be this weekend, probably Christmas Eve.
Christmas sometimes gets us all feeling guilty. We make crazy gingerbread houses, ornaments with handprints, and popsicle stick nativities. But it makes us remember those we’ve lost too. I spoke with my sweet friend the other day. She is still hurting from a tragic loss this summer. She said, “I wish Christmas would just be over.”
The hustle, the rush, the stress, and the family make us all a little bitter towards celebrating.
The truth is, Jesus came into the world on Christmas because of the hard things. He came because our world needed HOPE. I thought about my friend, the one who is hurting, and she needed hope. And I need hope too. I needed hope that hard things will be better….one day.
I loved looking at Revelation 19:11-16. It tells of Jesus’ second coming, an amazing reason to hope! In some ways, His first coming was similar to the first. Kings were involved. His angles were there, but unlike the first coming, an angel army will accompany Him. He is called “the Word of God” both times. Israel is a key player in both comings.
What struck me the most, when I compared the two advents, was how He comes. The first coming was filled with humility. From the stable to the fact He became man; He lived a life of service. In the second coming, He will be coming on a white horse, called the Lord of Lords and King of Kings. He will appear like a flame of fire with a sword to bring judgment.
When Christmas feels full of loss, we can take comfort. We are living in the time between the two advents. When I think about the first coming during Christmas, I pray I can spend some time remembering He will come again. The first time He came, He came to carry out salvation for all of mankind who believes in Him. The second time He comes, He will complete our salvation and bring us to the Father.
Joy to the World.
O Come, O Come Emmanuel.
The first coming reminds us the King is coming again.
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