Preparing for…

Today’s Devotional is offered by Rob Blackwood – Intern Emeritus

Matthew 14.23: After He had sent the crowds away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray; and when it was evening, He was there alone.

I would like to begin by confessing, that it was incredibly hard to not make this devotional related to Star Wars. But don’t fret, we are merely days away from The Last Jedi opening in theaters! But I digress.

Now we are considering the topic of preparation and we are starting to prepare ourselves (for Advent, Christmas, even Star Wars on December 15th). On that topic, it has been said that failing to prepare is preparing to fail. That certainly holds true when it comes to Christmas but it seems like the preparation starts earlier and earlier each year. Although it’s a holiday when everyone is supposed to be happy and loving, the stakes are incredibly high for Christmas…mess something up and you’ll likely hear about it for years to come from your family.

We go to the extremes for Christmas, there is no denying that. We have days on the calendar that are solely dedicated to shopping for presents, which I fully admit to taking part in, because you better believe I want to cash in on those savings! But think about it though…think about all the things that need to be prepared during the Christmas season.

There is time allotted for cooking, time for traveling, time for eating, time for decorating your tree and house, time for gift giving and the list could go on and on.
The gifts need to be wrapped, the food needs to be picked up from the grocery store, the tree needs to be put up and Amazon can’t do everything for you, not yet at least.
While all that is well and good, we are actually entering into a time solely devoted to the idea of preparing ourselves spiritually. Spiritually, we are preparing not to do anything mentioned previously, but instead, to do the most important thing in literally the history of the world: welcome the birth of our Lord and Savior.

There is so much going on in our lives during this time of the year and it seems like we utilize every second of the day up until we reach the end of December 25 when it starts all over again. My hope and prayer for all of us this day and each day during this season is that we can take a step back and think about what we really must do daily to prepare for the coming of our Savior. Because of everything listed, that is what truly matters above them all!

Prayer: Lord, help us to take time to step back and reflect on what we really need to prepare for. And, if you need to make us step back, may we know it is you who causes us to pause, just like you did. Amen.