The great longing of Christmas

Advent creates longing. The Scripture reading all season reflects on longing.

I love the celebration of Christmas, but I also love the stirring this season’s readings create in my heart.

A few weeks ago I walked into a colleague’s office and started with, “I’ve heard a rumor…”

His ears perked up, but he was cautious because he is not a man who wants to hang around a rumor mill.

I finishes: “that Jesus is coming again.”

He smiled and relaxed.

I then left him with a quote I heard from a man who has now experienced the fullness of what he said a few years ago: “I’m homesick for a place I’ve never been.”

Advent makes me homesick. I long for the fullness of the presence of Christ. He has come once. He will come again… and I have that deep longing. I want to go home.

The great invitation is given today:

12 “Look! I’m coming soon. My reward is with me, to repay all people as their actions deserve. 13 I am the alpha and the omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end. 14 Favored are those who wash their robes so that they may have the right of access to the tree of life and may enter the city by the gates. 15 Outside are the dogs, the drug users and spell-casters, those who commit sexual immorality, the murderers, the idolaters, and all who love and practice deception.

16 “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to bear witness to all of you about these things for the churches. I’m the root and descendant of David, the bright morning star. 17 The Spirit and the bride say, ‘Come!’ Let the one who hears say, ‘Come!’ And let the one who is thirsty come! Let the one who wishes receive life-giving water as a gift.” (Rev. 22:12-17)

Let us long for that day.

Celebrate the season. Long for his coming again.

It is the tension we need in our lives in these holy days.

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