Thursday, November 29, 2012

Advent Reflections on I Thessalonians 3:9-13

9How can we thank God enough for you in return for all the joy that we feel before our God because of you? 10Night and day we pray most earnestly that we may see you face to face and restore whatever is lacking in your faith. 11Now may our God and Father himself and our Lord Jesus direct our way to you. 12And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love for one another and for all, just as we abound in love for you. 13And may he so strengthen your hearts in holiness that you may be blameless before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his saints.

The word Advent simply means "coming". During the Advent season we celebrate the fact that Christ is coming again, and we journey once again to the manger as we remember and pay attention to Christ's first coming.

In the process, we are called to live out spiritual practices that make room for God's grace to take up more space in our hearts and lives. Here, as we anticipate Christ's second coming, we are challenged to make room for God's love to move through us. Specifically, we are challenged to "increase and abound in love for one another" and to "increase abound in love for all".

We are to ask God to strengthen our hearts in holiness. This means we open our hearts to purity and to the working of the Holy Spirit to make our lives look more like Jesus'. 

How are you allowing this season to prepare your heart for Christ?

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