Advent Devotional: December 14
Be patient, therefore, beloved, until the coming of the Lord. The farmer waits for the precious crop from the earth, being patient with it until it receives the early and the late rains. You also must be patient. Strengthen your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is near. Beloved, do not grumble against one another, so that you may not be judged See, the Judge is standing at the doors! As an example of suffering and patience, beloved, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord.
– James 5:7-10
Today is the day that I am traveling to pick up my son George from college. My heart is filled with excitement about seeing him, but my head is worried about the drive to Seguin. What will the traffic on I-35 be like? Will the weather be decent or miserable? Will my fifteen-year-old car make the trip without issues?
And isn’t our journey through Advent the same way? For most of us, we know there will be joy on Christmas, but we worry about getting there. Will we get the cards and the baking done? Who are we forgetting on our gift list? How can we get everything done? The stress of the season is enough to make us grumble. Whether it is the person who cuts us off for that parking space or the overstimulated child who’s getting on our last nerve. God, however, calls us to be an example of patience to the world.
So how can we remain patient this Advent season? One way that helps me accomplish this challenging goal is to stop looking at the fast-approaching end of Advent, and celebrate the small blessings around me each day. Appreciating nature by looking for trees with pretty color, smiling at strangers until one smiles back, and listening to music that makes me happy are a few of the blessings that I can seek out each day. They restore my soul and my patience.
So I ask you to spend a few minutes right now thinking about the small blessings in your life, and see if it doesn’t strengthen your heart for the journey.
Sarah Miller, NorthPark Elder