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November 30, 2014 - Our True Longing (Preparing the Way of the Lord) - Luke 1:5-7

posted Dec 3, 2014, 11:50 AM by Grant Garber   [ updated Jan 28, 2015, 6:56 AM ]
Even our longing prepares us for the coming of the Savior.
Jesus’ coming transforms the holiday into a holy-day, and He can be found in the most stressful moments that lie ahead.
The worship services of Advent are not meant to relieve stress but to help you recover your greatest longings in life.  Nothing could be more stressful.
In worship we bracket out the busyness long enough to realize that we were using it to suppress our deepest longings, which are mostly dangerously apparent in this season.
Just because certain yearnings are impossible to fulfill doesn’t prevent us from yearning for them.
God appeared to Zechariah while he was faithfully serving as a priest, and the first thing God did was renew his unrealistic longing.
When we receive grace from God, we receive not what we want; certainly not what we deserve, but we receive what we need.
What we all need most of all is to live in a world that is filled with the presence of God.  In such a world anything can happen.  Sins and failures can be redeemed, new beginnings can still occur, and the tattered old prayers that lie around on the floor of your soul can still be answered.  But --- usually not the way you imagined. 
The prayers for what you want prepare the way for what you need, which is grace.
Pay careful attention to the longing that propels you into all of this busyness.  And then watch for the strange ways in which a Savior arrives to reveal that your true longing has always been for Him.

Pastor Jim Spon | Luke 1:5-7