Reflections: Monday of the First Week in Advent

December 4, 2023 

Today’s Reading: Isaiah 65.1-9

Daily Lectionary: Isaiah 10:12-27a, 33-34; 2 Peter 1:1-21

I was ready to be sought by those who did not ask for me; I was ready to be found by those who did not seek me. I said, “Here I am, here I am,” to a nation that was not called by my name.” (Isaiah 65:1)

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.  How long does God have to wait for someone to seek Him out?  He’s ready.  How long does God have to wait for someone to actually find Him?  And, if we find Him, then what?  The truth is we don’t want anything to do with a God who is holy and just.  We certainly don’t want to come to Him and have to answer for ourselves.  Remember how that went for Adam and Eve when they realized they were naked and ashamed?  God comes looking for them, and they bury themselves behind some bushes wrapped in fig leaves.  God came to them, but they wished He hadn’t, and we’ve been hiding from Him ever since.  

The Apostle Paul lays out the truth about our hiding from the one true God, None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one. (Romans 3:10-12)  So, if we will never seek after God, no matter how ready He is for us to come, how in the world will we ever be welcomed by Him?  If we can’t cover our shame, as our first parents attempted, how can we ever be fit to be in His presence, let alone walk with Him and live with Him?  

God doesn’t wait for us to come to Him, and He certainly doesn’t wait until we’ve cleaned ourselves up. No, God comes to us.  He seeks us out and He finds us by sending His own Son to seek and save the lost.  God comes to you in Jesus and says, “Here am I coming to be born of a woman.  Here I am coming into the city that kills its prophets.  Here I am, arms spread out upon a Roman cross to cover your shame.  Here I am, risen from the dead, just as I said, to give you life with me.  Here I am, coming once again, this time to gather all who have believed in me for life together forever”.

God has sought you; He has found you.  His arms are wide open for you.  You are clean, you are forgiven, you belong to Him, and He will never let you go. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.

Come, Thou long expected Jesus, Born to set Thy people free; From our fears and sins release us; Let us find our rest in Thee.  Israel’s strength and consolation, Hope of all the earth Thou art, Dear desire of every nation, Joy of every longing heart.  (LSB 338:1)

– Pastor Darrin Sheek is the Senior Pastor of Prince of Peace Lutheran in Anaheim, CA.

Audio Reflections Speaker: Pastor Jonathan Lackey is the pastor at Grace Lutheran Church, Vine Grove, Ky.

Study Christ’s words on the cross to see how you can show more Christlike grace in your life. Perfect for group or individual study, each chapter has a Q&A at the end, and the back of the book includes a leader guide. Available now from Concordia Publishing House.