If there is anything I am learning in this season of Advent it is to allow the darkness to do something in me.
This is my first year in a fully liturgical church and the worship in this season has aided in my perspective. Then there is the book by Fleming Rutledge on Advent that is constantly turning my attention to the need of Advent. Quite simply, we must face the darkness.
We are not to turn away. We are to learn what Christ wants to do in us and LONG for his return.
It is to meditate on the lostness of the world and the deep need for light and for Christ to truly return and judge what is truly, deeply wrong in our world.
The Sunday readings for the second and third Sundays focused on John the Baptist. What better way to say, “Merry Christmas!” than to go out to the wilderness and let some man yell at you, “Brood of vipers”?
This is indeed a dark world. I have turned to that reality a bit more this season because I am called to reflect on what is wrong and long for Christ to come and make it right.
It is the story of a young mother convicted and sentenced to 40 years because she decided to party all night long and left her two little ones (ages 1 and 2) in the car to die from heat exhaustion.
It is to mourn another story of systemic church failure where a Baptist church association covered up hundreds of sexual abuse cases by their pastors over the past few decades and nothing was done to deal with those predators.
It is the story of the rich trafficking hundreds of young women for their own pleasure and getting away with it while those prosecutors were rewarded for their lame efforts by being promoted into high ranking government offices a few years later.
This world is dark. This time is dark. And we need the King of kings to get here and make this right.
It is a time to prepare my own heart and search my own darkness and ask the Lord to prepare ME for his return.