Be Prepared Monday, December 6, 2021
John the Baptist went into all the country around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. As is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet:
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.
Be Prepared. When you hear these words, perhaps you think of the Boy Scout motto, or stocking up on food and essentials in event of an emergency, or even Scar singing in the Lion King about his nefarious plan to become king. To be prepared can mean to be in a state of readiness in mind and body, to do your duty, to proactively take care of your physical needs, or to heed the warning of what is to come.
But how do we prepare in our world today when so often we do not know what lies ahead? A global pandemic that has altered our lives. Societal issues of injustice and division. Economic challenges of inflation and shortages. Personal struggles with relationships and health. All of these can overwhelm us, and alone, we may lose hope.
But there is reason to be hopeful as the voice in the wilderness gives us the answer. We may not be able to prepare for all we face in the world today, but we can prepare our hearts for the Lord. Trust in Him and open your heart to Him. Repent for the forgiveness of your sins, and make straight paths for the Lord. And the Good News, He will do the rest. He will fill every valley, He will make every mountain and hill low, He will make the crooked roads straight and the rough ways smooth. And all mankind will see God’s salvation.
Gracious God, thank you for the gift of your Son, the savior of the world, whose grace and mercy sustain us. In this season of Advent, help us to prepare our hearts for Him, and to trust in His provisions for our lives. In Him, All Earth is Hopeful. Amen.
St. John’s Lutheran Church, Salisbury, NC
This devotional is a joint project between Christmas Lutheran (Bethlehem) and St. John’s (Salisbury, NC).