Sunday, December 4
Isaiah 10:12-27a, 33-34 and 2 Peter 1:1-21
I love to cook, especially during the holidays. Sometimes I pay homage to cherished family recipes, but more often, I attempt something new in the hope that mine will look and taste as delectable as the picture on the gourmet blog. I often bite off more than I can chew. Once I have shopped three different stores to find one ingredient, I am poring over the recipe, re-reading to make sure I have not missed a morsel. A scant teaspoon? A rolling boil? I want the end to hit the mark.
Today’s II Peter text is a recipe, its ingredients expanded fruits of the Spirit. [M]ake every effort to add to your faith goodness, and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love (II Peter 1:5-7). Reflecting on these directions, I am convicted that the intentionality with which I approach a new culinary feat is not always matched by my fervor for God’s Word and direction.
For you, the analogy may not be served in the kitchen. Perhaps you craft the perfect March Madness bracket or an heirloom for everyone on your Christmas list. Such avocations are not bad in and of themselves, but whenever we put things above God, any yield of the Spirit’s fruits will be in precipitous peril. The Isaiah 10 text for today relayed the same among the shrinking remnant of God’s chosen people and how they—like we— needed redirection and correction. Thanks be to God for His mercy and deliverance! Isaiah 10:27 proclaims, In that day their burden will be lifted from your shoulders, their yoke from your neck. We are made right through our Messiah. Unlike an elusive ingredient or the odds of predicting the next NCAA champion, no supply chain issue or impossible odds will prohibit our Savior’s arrival to all at the close of this Advent season.
My feast may turn foul, and some on your Christmas list may receive a bag of materials with the note “some assembly still required.” Yet in faith cultivated by the Holy Spirit through God’s Word and Sacraments, each of us will hit the mark.
DR. MICHAEL UDEN
About this series
“Advent Anticipation: the arrival of our Savior” is a sampling of biblical meditations composed by members of the CUWAA community. It is our prayer that you will take time during the Advent season to read and reflect upon God’s Word and await the coming of Jesus with newfound enthusiasm and anticipation through the Holy Spirit.