Advent is a time of waiting. As Henri Nouwen re- minds us, “It is waiting in the knowledge that someone wants to address us. The question is, are we home . . . . ready to respond to the doorbell?” Advent is a great time to become ready to respond to the doorbell. Psalm 25 reminds us the longings of our hearts – longings which are promised by God. Perhaps these prayerful questions will help us focus on the blessings that are available from God and through the coming of Jesus.
Psalm 25: 4-10 (MSG)
“Show me how you work,God;
School me in your ways.
Where have I seen God at work in my life recently? What can I do to pay more attention to God’s activity in the world and my world? How does God “school” me? Am I listening for God’s direction and/or God’s correction? Why not?
Take me by the hand;
Lead me down the path of truth.
You are my Savior, aren’t you?
Do I follow as my shepherd leads me to green pastures and beside still waters. Am I allowing God to take my hand? What can I do during Advent to confirm or profess that Jesus is my Savior?
Mark the milestones of your mercy and love, God;
Rebuild the ancient landmarks!
What are the milestones in my life that mark God’s mercy and love? Do they still influence me or are they long forgotten? Do I have to rebuild these landmarks so that they will always be present in my mind. How can I do that?
Forget that I sowed wild oats;
Mark me with your sign of love.
Plan only the best for me, God!
Do I feel marked by a sign of God’s love? If I am unsure that God loves me always and wants only the best of me, how can I recognize the mark of God’s love? How do I learn to trust God more? What “wild oats” have I sowed that remain unconfessed or even hidden from myself?
God is fair and just;
He corrects the misdirected,
Sends them in the right direction.
He gives the rejects his hand,
And leads them step-by-step.
From now on every road you travel
Will take you to God.
Follow the Covenant signs;
Read the charted directions” (MSG).
Do I fully believe that God is “fair and just?” Am I holding something against God because it seems as if life is not fair? Have I felt rejected by God or by any person? Am I willing to give up my fear or resentment and let God lead me step-by-step to the assurance of his love and to the forgiveness I need to show to others? Am I willing to find God on every road I take, or do I walk some paths I would never want God to know about? What are the “Covenant signs” for my life? Where can I find the “charted directions?”