Welcome to the fourth of these Advent devotionals on “Preparation.” Perhaps you want to invite a friend to join you on this journey.
About 35 years ago, when my children were still very young, I wanted a way to help Tim, Prisca and John grasp the true meaning of Christmas. The world around them distracted them from a humble stable in Bethlehem. Stores were decorated with trees and toys, people lined up to get photos with Santa and his elves, grocery aisles blared Christmas music about reindeer.
How could I prepare my sons and daughter for the advent of Jesus’ birth? How could I ready them to obey the Lord?
That is when I first began this yearly tradition of preparing 24 Advent devotionals that built a wave of anticipation, a wave that crested on December 25th. In 1 Chron. 29:1-20, the people of God brought gifts to build God’s Temple. They presented their gifts freely and wholeheartedly. It was almost like Christmas!
King David’s heart also filled with joy, but in verse 18, he asked God for one more thing: “O Lord, the God of our ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, prepare your people to always want to obey you. See to it that their love for you never changes.”
God has been answering that prayer for thousands of years. God sent his Son to earth that he might show us how to obey the Father. But we have work to do at our end also. As Christmas approaches this year, read the entire chapter from 1 Chronicles. Will your heart be ready to obey him?