For to us a child is born, to us a Son is given, and the government will be on His shoulders. And He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6
We feel something coming, deep within our bones. We let the excitement build within, wondering what awaits us. Sometimes, it takes a long time to arrive, but it makes the wait worth even more. We all await a hope in our hearts that builds as days go on.
No one felt this tug more certain than the Jews, thousands of years back, while they awaited a Savior. Through the wilderness. Through their scattering into nations. Through the signs and stumbles and wars and celebrations, they kept their hearts always ahead, hanging on the hope of a hero.
And He appeared. Sweeter than anything they could have anticipated. But only a few noticed that first night, when He silently slid into the world He came to save. His parents looked down at their precious child, asleep soundly in His makeshift crib of cutout wood. They traced the curve of His nose, the sweep of His cheek that sung with each rise and fall of heavenly breath. His innocence before them, curled in a manger. And as all parents do, they anticipated His life: His childhood, the teachings He would impart not only on them, but on the world. Then the trial. The trail of blood and tears up a hill, where His final task would check complete.
Did they know just how full their little boy’s life would be? Did they realize the thousands of hearts who were anticipating the child who lay sleeping in this soft night? The world was wide and ready for the One it was made for.
But not now. Not yet. This night was theirs. Between donkeys and dreams, a man placed his newborn in his wife’s arms, gently touched His tender face, and kneeled before them both, amazed how he could ever hold such immense love for someone so small.
How will God prepare your heart to anticipate Him this Christmas season?
Speak and Listen:
Spend time with God, telling Him what you’re most anticipating about Christmas. Ask Him to reveal Himself to you in a new way.
Precious Father, thank You for this time of the year. The anticipation of snow, lights, and a warm feeling in my soul. But we remember another anticipation, an eternal anticipation and where this excitement fused with You, Father, and Your promise--a manger. With a tiny baby who changed our world. Let me remember the reason for the season. Amen.