Reverse the Flow

Our text from the Old Testament prophet Isaiah comes from a time of high anxiety, impatience, and discouragement for God’s people. There was tremendous political infighting. Corruption was widespread. Powerful Assyria had gathered up smaller nations and was headed toward Jerusalem with an eye toward conquering them. Alternate religions infiltrated into the people’s minds, and they turned away from God. In the midst of this crisis, Isaiah had a vision of a united, harmonious Israel, and peace on earth.

Isaiah 2 

The word that Isaiah son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.

In days to come
    the mountain of the Lord’s house
shall be established as the highest of the mountains
    and shall be raised above the hills;
all the nations shall stream to it.

3     Many peoples shall come and say,
“Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord,
    to the house of the God of Jacob,
that he may teach us his ways
    and that we may walk in his paths.”
For out of Zion shall go forth instruction
    and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.

As we begin the season of Advent, we can easily put on our New Testament glasses and see Jesus in this prophecy. He came to bring peace, unity, and harmony to our hearts. In his second coming, he will bring these things to the world when he reigns from Jerusalem as the Prince of Peace. The second coming is what we are waiting for as we dwell in the marvel of his first coming on earth on that first Christmas morning. Advent is thus a time to reflect, rejoice, and make spiritual preparations for the birth of the Messiah again in our hearts. As the carol says, “Be born in us today!”

Yet many of us will be overwhelmed by the flow of secular Christmas and spend this time overspending, overeating, overindulging, and going over the top in ways that we will pay for all next year. It will take months to shed that credit card debt and those 3-5 pounds many of us will gain between Thanksgiving and New Year. And for what? Is that why Jesus came?

I propose that we work hard to reverse the flow of commercialism and dwell in the light of Christ instead.

A friend of mine told me a remarkable story about her trip to Fort Myers last week to help people whose houses were damaged by Hurricane Nicole. The team was ripping out drywall and wet insulation from a home and the homeowner showed her something amazing. When the house was built, the homeowners went through the house with their kids and wrote Scriptures on the walls. When the flood waters came raging through the house, the water stopped just short of the place on the walls where the Scriptures were written. God’s word remained.

This is a powerful reminder for us today about the power that God’s word has over the flow of destructive forces in our lives. As we spend this Advent season trying to reverse the flow of secular behavior, may we remember to stay anchored in God’s word, which is immovable and unchangeable. If we had to choose just one scripture for this Advent waiting place, it should be Psalm 46: “Be still, and know that I am God.”

This Advent, may we commit to being still in God’s presence!

Be Born in Us Today by Michelle Robertson

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s