The Advent Door Reading Plan
Day 1 Reading:
Jesus will return at an unexpected time. Be ready and awake for Jesus’ return, because only those who are prepared will be taken.
The gospel lection for the first Sunday of Advent is always a passage that, whether taken from Matthew, Mark, or Luke, is known as “the little apocalypse.” Each year the first gospel lection of Advent challenges us to remember that this season is a time not only of remembering the Christ who has already come to us but who, the gospels tell us, will come again, with attendant signs and wonders.
– Jan Richardson, Through the Advent Door
I didn’t grow up going to church. When I was 15 my boyfriend and I watched a TV show one Saturday afternoon which “proved” the world would end in the year 2000. It scared us right into church the next day. Time was short and we needed to get ready to meet our Maker.
I attended worship services, Bible studies, and choir practice for over a year before I received Christ as my Lord and Savior. The funny thing is, the guy eventually left but God stayed. As the years with God passed, including the year 2000, God’s grace and welcome mended my misconceptions. When I began I found myself standing at my Father’s house begging to be a slave, and was instead named and celebrated as a beloved child and heir. Like so many others, I grew to follow and serve God out of love rather than fear.
I wish the Scriptures said that everyone will be taken by Christ at his return, but they do not. Because they do not, many shrink back from the second coming passages as too frightening or discount them as too harsh. Like the rest of Scripture, these passages are provided by God for our good. They speak the truth to us in love, that our eyes might be opened, that we would be drawn to our Savior while there is still time.
Word of God, speak.
Would you pour down like rain,
washing my eyes to see your majesty,
to be still and know that you’re in this place?
Please let me stay and rest in your holiness.
Word of God, speak.
– The chorus of Word of God, Speak by Pete Kipley and Bart Millard
This year’s Advent reflections are inspired by the e-book Through the Advent Door: Entering a Contemplative Christmas [Kindle Edition] by author and artist Jan Richardson. In the style of a classic Advent calendar, Jan offers twenty five reflections, each with an original piece of art. Consider this your invitation to join me and Jan on this journey to Christmas. – Lisa <><
For more information on the Christian season of Advent, click here
For more information on the scripture translation, art and the use of this devotional in other settings, please refer to the copyright information page.