I think Advent can be a time of contradictions. We’re both celebrating and waiting. We’re planted firmly in the in-between days between the first and second coming of Christ.
Today’s reading from Paul’s letter to the Romans expresses this:
I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God. We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently. In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God. (Romans 8:18-27 NIV)
Do you ever just long for everything to be made right?
A while ago someone shared with me this website and button (have a click!):
It’s funny and satisfying to click but it basically expresses what Paul is talking about, this deep longing in us all and even in the whole creation, for everything to be made right.
Hope for the Christian is not wishful thinking, it costs us, it makes us groan “how long Lord?”
Hope is about waiting – and don’t we all hate waiting, especially in our modern world! For us though, we are not groaning and waiting on our own, the Holy Spirit groans with us and when we express that longing for the world to be made right we are expressing the heart and longing of God.