Advent Day 3, 2014
Joshua 24:14-16: 14″Now, therefore, fear the LORD and serve Him in sincerity and truth; and put away the gods which your fathers served beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the LORD. 15″If it is disagreeable in your sight to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves today whom you will serve: whether the gods which your fathers served which were beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living; but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.” 16The people answered and said, “Far be it from us that we should forsake the LORD to serve other gods;…”
I often wonder what Jesus would think if he wandered into many of our modern-day churches. Would he be bewildered or pleased at all that has been built in his name? I have a deep love for churches and church life, but I wonder how Jesus would regard the beautiful stained glass, the carefully constructed liturgies, the long-held traditions and trinkets of our life together. Would he nod in appreciation at our steadfast devotion and all that the generations have tried to do in his name? Would he be aghast at how sidetracked we get and how much time and money and energy we spend on things that have little to do with sharing the Gospel?
During this season of Advent, there is much at stake. It’s not just another window of time, another color of church banners, rather, everything we believe and are and might yet become has reached its tipping point. Each of us must choose now whether we are people who will only rest in our faith, or if we will act in our faith. Each of us must choose today whether we just believe what Jesus said, or whether we will live what Jesus said.
With each choice we make, each interaction we have, and with each dollar we spend, we show what we really think of Jesus’ words to us, his life and his death. Today must be the day when we claim whose we are with all that we are. This is the day we must do it because yesterday has passed and tomorrow is only a possibility.
“Disturb us, O Lord, when we are too well-pleased with ourselves, when our dreams have come true because we dreamed too little, because we sailed too close to the shore. Disturb us, O Lord, when with the abundance of things we possess, we have lost our thirst for the water of life, when, having fallen in love with time, we have ceased to dream of eternity and in our efforts to build a new earth, we have allowed our vision of Heaven to grow dim. Stir us, O Lord, to dare more boldly, to venture into wider sea where storms show Thy mastery, where losing sight of land, we shall find the stars. In the name of Him who pushed back the horizons of our hopes and invited the brave to follow. Amen.” – Desmond Tutu
Prayer: Dear Lord, help us to fully live our lives for you. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
Reflection: What is something you can do today to boldly live your faith in Jesus Christ?