Sunday, December 7, 2014

The Waiting

My due date has come and gone, and it honestly feels like I'm going to be pregnant forever. At this point, I can barely remember what its like to walk without waddling or live day to day without discomfort. Even though I know my sweet girl's birth is inevitable, its hard to keep the faith.

This waiting is always the toughest part for me, but I know that waiting is a way of life for my people. This time of year, during the advent season, I can't help thinking about the generations who waited for a Savior, and now the generations of Christians who have and are now waiting for our Savior's return, the resurrection, and the new creation.

I get so sidetracked by life. Amidst all the noise and hysteria over communicable diseases, the battles over race and inequality, the new fashions, and the everyday chores, I begin to live on the surface of things so easily forgetting the narrative and the story that is actually driving history.

Christ has come.

God has seen the pain and misery of humanity. He has seen our wars, famines, diseases, exploitation and abuses. Instead of turning away, He sent His Son because of His love for us.

Jesus came as a helpless baby and lived a life of humility as a carpenter and traveling teacher. His miracles gave us a glimpse into the kingdom He established on this earth. The sick are healed, the poor and abandoned cared for, and the natural elements are tamed. He came and showed us what it means to be fully human.

Christ has died.

The misery of humanity is caused by the sin of humanity. Our slavery to selfishness, greed, disobedience, and lust cause us to destroy ourselves and each other. God's justice had to be satisfied. Someone had to pay the penalty for all of this destruction and humanity deserves His wrath.

But He loved us and sent His Son whose life is infinitely more precious and pure than all of humanity. He sent Jesus to lay His life down and be cut off from the presence of His Father so that our relationship with God could be restored.

Christ has risen.

Jesus not only died in our place: He defeated death and broke the power of sin over us. Humanity was never meant to die. We all know how harrowing and unnatural death is. Jesus relates with humanity through His death and proves His divinity through his resurrection.

He was fully human, and He was also fully divine. Unlike the rest of humanity, He did not inherit the sin and its ultimate consequence of death through the genes of Adam. He chose to lay down His life. If He had not, He would not have died to begin with. Death could not hold Jesus and because He has given us His perfect record it can no longer hold us.

Christ will come again.

Christ will come back to earth again to fully establish His kingdom which is now here in part. He will do what Adam was called to do but could not do: To fill the earth and subdue it for the glory of God and to make it a place of beauty and righteousness and peace.

Revelation 21:1-4
1Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. 2And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling placea of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people,b and God himself will be with them as their God.c 4He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”

 This is the promise, and like the birth of my baby it is inevitable but hard to believe. It is hard to keep the faith. Death is not forever. Pain, grief and suffering are not forever. One day there will be justice and the kind of world we all long and strive for.

Romans 8:19-25
For the creation waits with eager longing for othe revealing of the sons of God.20 For the creation pwas subjected to futility, not willingly, but qbecause of him who subjected it, in hope 21 that rthe creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. 22 For we know that sthe whole creation thas been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. 23 And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have uthe firstfruits of the Spirit,vgroan inwardly as wwe wait eagerly for adoption as sons, xthe redemption of our bodies. 24 For yin this hope we were saved. Nowzhope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we await for it with patience.

Come Thou long expected Jesus
Born to set Thy people free
From our fears and sins release us
Let us find our rest in Thee
Israel's strength and consolation
Hope of all the earth Thou art
Dear desire of every nation
Joy of every longing heart
Joy to those who long to see thee
Day-spring from on high appear
Come thou promised Rod of Jesse
Of Thy birth we long to hear
O'er the hills the angels singing
News glad tidings of a birth
Go to him your praises bringing
Christ the Lord has come to earth
Come to earth to taste our sadness
He whose glories knew no end
By his life he brings us gladness
Our Redeemer Shepherd Friend
Leaving riches without number
Born within a cattle stall
This the everlasting wonder
Christ was born Lord of all
Born Thy people to deliver
Born a child and yet a King
Born to reign in us forever
Now Thy gracious kingdom bring
By Thine own eternal spirit
Rule in all our hearts alone
By Thine all sufficient merit
Raise us to Thy glorious throne
-Words by Charles Wesley-