Getting Ready For Christmas
Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!
I glanced through some magazines and saw article after article warning about Christmas stress and telling people how to prepare for Christmas. They gave the usual advice: Do your baking early; wrap your gifts as you purchase them; do not fill every minute with activity. These are good ideas, and I am sure you have thought of some yourself.
The people who listened to John the Baptist had some preparing to do too. No, not for celebrating Christmas, but for the start of the public ministry of the Lord Jesus (Isaiah 40:3-5; Malachi 3:1). John’s mission was to prepare the way for the Messiah by preaching a message of repentance (Luke 3:3). In preparation for the Messiah’s coming, the people were to cleanse their hearts by seeking God’s forgiveness for their sins.
As we get ready to celebrate and remember the coming of the Lord Jesus to earth, we too should heed John’s message of repentance. In Matthew 3:2 the Bible says: Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand! Now to me, that seems a very good idea, because it is most important to enter this season of the year with a pure heart. To do that, we need to confess our sin, turn from it, and renew our fellowship with the Lord. Then we will truly be ready to celebrate the Christmas season with great joy and peace.
That is how to get ready for Christmas.
Lord God, help me to prepare my heart to remember and celebrate the great and wonderful Gift of Your Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, and the great cost to Yourself. In Christ's name. Amen.