By Garrett Vickrey
That’s not a typo. I mean fourwords. Four words to prepare us to move forward into the new age to which Christ beckons us.
Prepare, Return, Rejoice, Awake! Four words.
But, not the traditional four words. The weeks leading up to Christmas are traditionally marked by Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love. Four nouns that describe the gifts God wants to bring to our lives. But, we must make space for these gifts by preparing a place for them.
In order to make space for the almighty God who comes to us in the form of the all-too-dependent infant there is work for us to do. So we need four verbs to prepare for the four nouns. Prepare, Return, Rejoice, Awake! to make space for Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love. In a season of hustle and bustle, a season of to-do lists and “to-get” lists, these four verbs remind us of what we need to do to get ready (not just for Christmas obligations) but for Christmas. The light of the world is coming to us. God in flesh is on his way.
Advent is a season of preparation. It is a time for us to make space in our lives for God to come and do something unbelievable. In order to be ‘ready’ there is work to be done. What if this year you prepared for Christ’s coming as much as you prepare for your relatives or that party you are helping to throw?
That takes intentionality. It takes effort to Prepare for the Hope we have in Christ, to Return to the life of Peace God is calling us to; it takes resolve to Rejoice in the Joy of the season and keep Awake to the Love of God that comes to us in the child in the manger.
Four words for us as we move forward to Bethlehem.