Advent: December 16

Read: Rev. 21:4
Thoughts for Parents:

Truthfully, there are days when it seems like crying, death, mourning and pain will never end. Of course, by His grace not every day is a day of overwhelming sorrow. However, there are enough of these days now for me to long for the time when laughter, life, joy, and vitality are mine. Forever.

The Apostle John brought us this vision of a new day. He was given a taste of future glory, and, like us, He needed it. John was living in exile, away from his home, his friends, and his church. It would have been easy for him to have been discouraged—it wasn’t good for him to be alone and there was nothing he could do to change it. His aloneness was being enforced by the Roman emperor, Domitian. So the Lord Jesus, out of great love for His best friend, visited him (not even Domitian could keep King Jesus away from His friends) and brought him some good news. Yes, things looked really terrible. Yes, Domitian’s power seemed limitless, and he certainly could make John’s life miserable, but this life was not all the life that John had. His life was hidden with Christ in heaven. Like John, we need to be reminded that there is a loving King who is overseeing everything and no power is able to stop King Jesus from visiting us and bringing us to Himself in great joy.

Earthly powers had tried to stop Jesus before. Herod had all the babies in Bethlehem slaughtered. Women wept in great mourning, but Jesus was safe. His mission to overcome all our sorrow, all our exile and isolation wouldn’t, couldn’t be thwarted. And even though we’re physically separated from him right now, a day will surely come when we will finally be home, a day when “the dwelling place of God” will be with man. “He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall here be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” Being with him in unmitigated fellowship is the answer to all our sorrow, pain, and tears.

Thoughts for Children:

You know how good it feels to come home sometimes? Like when you have been away from your parents and you get home and there are chocolate chips cookies waiting for you? Or when it is rainy and cold outside and you run into your house and there is a nice warm fire burning in the fire place? Maybe you don’t have a fireplace or warm cookies but you know how nice it is to get a hug when you walk in your door. Well that snuggly feeling of being home is only a small taste of what it is going to be like when we get to heaven.

Home should feel safe, I know sometimes it doesn’t, God promises to make all the hurt and sadness in our lives become happiness some day. This should make your heart be excited about heaven. Some day we are going to have a forever home where we never cry, we never feel any pain, no one will ever die. In our forever home the most exciting thing will be that we get to be with God. He will be right there with us, and all of the times when you felt like you were praying to nothing, all of the times that you felt like no one cared, all of the times you felt alone will be gone forever. God’s love will erase all of those thoughts from our memory, wipe away all of our tears and fear, and all we will know is His good smile on us for all of eternity.

No Comments