This is a guest post by Cindy Hylton and was written for New City IPC on the first Sunday of Advent 2013.
Pausing. Remembering. Listening. Paying attention. Acknowledging that the world—and each of us individually and personally—dearly need a Saviour. These are days for us to be aware of our own need for salvation. It is a time to declare our own darkness, our struggle, our sin, our tears, our hunger and thirst. And that of the world we live in.
We are to prepare this way in order to better listen to the promises; to listen to the rich Old Testament texts announcing the hope and freedom we truly long for. When our hearts are open, when our hands are open, when we individually know how we need a Savior; then we are ready to begin Advent.
Our need is shown early in Genesis 3:8-15
And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. But the Lord God called to the man and said to him, “Where are you?” And he said, “I heard the sound of you in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked, and I hid myself.”
He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?” The man said, “The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate.” Then the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this that you have done?” The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”
The Lord God said to the serpent,
“Because you have done this, cursed are you above all livestock and above all beasts of the field; on your belly you shall go, and dust you shall eat all the days of your life. I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.”
At Advent we mediate on not only our need, but the hope that is promised to us. The first glimmer of that hope we heard already in the curse to the serpent – that the offspring of the woman would crush his head.
The Saviour has come. The dark days will not last forever.