Friday, 16 November 2012

Friday - prepare the way

Prayer: Ruler of time and space, You call us to be co-creators with You, to be a part of the redemptive world of Christ our saviour, and to begin the process of making all things new in ways that honour and glorify You. As we open Your word today help us also to live by Your Word in ways that improve all of life, for the sake of Christ our Lord. Amen.

Read St  Luke  3: 1 – 6

Luke sets this passage in time and space, it is a veritable who’s who of the Middle East at the beginning of the common era. Kings and emperors, governors and priests all come into the story-- Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate,  Herod tetrarch of Galilee,  Philip tetrarch of Iturea and Traconitis,  Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene,  High Priests  Annas and Caiaphas. This is a moment in time such as the one we live in, with prime ministers and premiers, mayor and moderators who have different levels of authority and power over us.   In the midst of the great list of who is who,   comes the Word of God not to all those in power but to a man by the name of John.  John brings with him the words of a prophet, “Prepare the way of the Lord.”

"A voice of one calling in the desert. 
Prepare the way for the Lord,  make straight paths for him. 
Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill made low. 
The crooked roads shall become straight, the rough ways smooth.
And all mankind will see God's salvation"  (Luke 3: 4-6)

John states that there is something major about to happen and you need to do the repair work to show that it is important.   In ancient times when a royal person was to come visit, word would have been sent ahead to fix the rough spots on the road, fill in the potholes, and clean up the rubbish along the way. After all, the place had to be respectable for a great person.

In this passage,  God is coming and the clean-up had to happen at the personal level. Isaiah the prophet’s words resounded with the people and there was a renewed interest in the presence of God. People came to see God at work in their everyday lives.

There may not have been burning bushes which spoke to the people on every street corner but they saw the personal presence of God. And they felt the need to change. Because John raised the expectation of seeing God,  many did see God  when Jesus came. 

Today.....  where will you see the presence of God in your life?   What will you change about your life so as to glorify God?  Where do you see Jesus working in your life and in your community?

Prayer: May Your word come to my life afresh every day that I may see every common bush aflame with the love of God, every relationship infused with the love of God, and the presence of God close to me in everything I do. Guide me this day O Lord so that I may be a voice of one calling in the desert to prepare the way for Your Son in my community and church and family.   This I ask in Your Son’s name.  Amen.

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