15 Dec Joyful Expectation | December 15
Joyful Expectation is our theme for Advent at Good Shepherd this coming season.
The phrase has an exciting ring to it. Perhaps it even brings back memories of our early childhood days – starting school, new friends, summers, Christmas gifts. Life was good! Time passed and as we aged there were new things to anticipate such as High School, dates, then college, perhaps new job opportunities, marriage and then maybe anticipating the arrival of children. Life was exciting! If we were blessed with Christian parents we grew to love the Lord and He became the focal point in our lives.I sat one gloomy, rainy day looking at a huge maple tree across the street. It seemed to have a million beautiful golden leaves. The tree’s leaves, like ourselves, have a beginning and an end. The leaves, as they fall, have no worries during that span of their life. It made me ponder about how I have been living my life from beginning and until the Lord calls me home. Have I joyfully anticipated His coming and did I share that good news of salvation with others? Satan tries hard to discourage us from doing so!We all too soon discover that life is not perfect. We read in the paper and listen to the news everyday it seems of tragedies: the duck boat at the Dells sinking with lives lost, a plane with all passengers crashing into the ocean, an entire town named Paradise (how ironic) being wiped out by fires in California, children and adults killed by people with guns. The list goes on and on. We almost want to cry out to the Lord to come quickly!My sister and I spend some time together and often she says after the news stories that we should turn on the “Good News” station! If only there was such a station! My husband and I used to sing duets often and one of the songs we sang was entitled: I LOOK NOT BACK (words by Annie Johnson Flint). Three of the verses went like this:
I look not back; God knows the fruitless efforts,
The wasted hours, the sinning, the regrets.
I leave them all with Him who blots the record.
And graciously forgives, and then forgets.
I look not round me; then would fears assail me,
So wild the tumult of earth’s restless seas.
So dark the world, so filled with woe and evil.
So vain the hope of comfort and of ease.
But I look up—into the face of Jesus,
For there my heart can rest, my fears are stilled;
And there is joy, and love, and light for darkness,
And perfect peace, and every hope fulfilled.
Come, Lord Jesus. We joyfully anticipate your arrival!
by Mary Bosben
This post is part of a series of Advent Reflections – “Joyful Expectation”
Learn more about the series at gslcwi.com/advent