Saturday, December 17, 2022

Collette McFarland 

What Advent Means To Me

Scripture: Matthew 24:27 (NRSV) For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes as far as the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.

Devotion: When I was in my early teens, and we were talking a long, long time ago, and a new Christian, I was frightened by thunderstorms. I feared being struck by lightning or washed away down some newly formed raging river that once used to be our street. After all, these fears were well founded through the news broadcasts that my parents calmly watched while eating dinner during the storms of people being washed away from their cars and homes. I thought they couldn’t possibly be paying attention to the fact that our lives were on the verge of extinction.

But I eventually overcame that fear during a Bible reading one day while hiding in the bathtub during an especially horrific storm with lightning and thunder and cats and dogs falling from the sky. My parents were at the dinner table watching the news calmly as usual. I was clutching my Bible tightly, praying as Jesus did in the boat with his disciples for the storm to cease…but my present storm increased in intensity. My prayer was taking the wrong direction. However, as I fervently prayed, I flipped the Bible open, and it opened to Math 24:27, where I found immediate comfort. I realized what I feared, an instant or a frightful death, was a sign of Christ’s second return and our entrance into eternity. This verse ended the spiritual storm I was experiencing and reversed my reaction to storms: I now like to sit on the porch watching the sky for signs of a man on a white horse being followed by the host of heaven: Rev. 19:11-16. So the advent season helps me to celebrate Christ’s first Advent while I look forward to the fulfillment of the other biblical prophecies.

However, I still prefer to avoid driving in torrential deluges.

Prayer: Lord, help me to prepare for your second Advent. Amen.

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