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Striving While We Wait

Striving While We Wait

john the baptistJohn the Baptiser came preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins in preparation for the coming of the Messiah [Matt 1:4].

Today we are likewise called to repentance as we prepare and await the Day of the Lord so vividly described by the Old Testament prophets.

Conviction of sin – the bedrock of our faith – is a rare thing that signals a deep understanding of God through the work of his Holy Spirit. The entrance into the Kingdom is through the panging pains of repentance that crash into our respectable goodness. Only through conscious repentance can the Holy Spirit manifest in us unconscious holiness.

Peter was one of Jesus’ closest disciples – one of the inner three and a recognised leader. Remembered more for his impulsiveness, Peter’s greatest lesson was that enthusiasm must be backed up by faith and understanding or it is wasted.

Peter’s encouragement to believers eagerly awaiting Christ’s return was that the coming of the ‘day of God’ could actually be hastened through living holy lives, through prayer and penitence [2Peter 3:11-12].

Our challenge is to be ready to face Christ at any and every turn by striving to be actively involved in God’s work in the here and now. But it’s not our service or achievement that matters, rather that we connect with Jesus in every thought, word and deed. He is here now!

Advent is the season of preparing and striving through repentance and prayer as we eagerly await the coming of our God who chose to enter into all that decays and dies, and to know it with us through the person of Jesus – Immanuel – God with us – now.

“The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”)  [Matt 1:23, Isa 7:14]