Isaiah 9: 2, 6
When I was young, our family tradition was to take a picture of the children when they first saw the tree on Christmas morning. Santa and his "elves" had transformed the tree and the surrounding area from what it was when we went to bed. The adults delighted in the amazed, wondering faces of the children, so they captured the moment year after year.
After the ceremonial picture was taken, it was time for the Big Reveal. We children would begin our attack run on the Christmas tree. We would grab gifts and sort them quickly - "Cecil, this one is for you!" - and then would commence opening the packages.
In my mind, I return to that delicious moment of wonder and possibility when we children first saw the transformation. We might have some expectation of what was under the tree, but usually we were surprised by what we saw.
Continuing my advent devotional theme of waiting, the people of Israel waited and waited for Messiah to come. They had certain expectations of what Messiah would be and do. They would have relied on the prophet Isaiah's description of the waiting and the big reveal, quoted from Isaiah 9, verses 2 and 6.
The people walking in darkness have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of deep darkness, a light has dawned.
For to us a child is born, to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Even though we are on the other side of the Big Reveal of Jesus, we too wait in darkness for his light to shine again and again. We always need the refreshment and rejuvenation of his counseling, holiness, leadership, and peace.
This Advent, let us wait expectantly for yet another delightful Big Reveal. In what surprising way will Christ make himself known to you and by you?
Check out the December podcast of the Top 11 Themes of Jesus - #4, The New Creation. You can find the podcast by starting at the Cecil Taylor Ministries Free Content page at CecilTaylorMinistries.com/free-content, or by searching for "Cecil Taylor Monthly Podcasts" on Audacy, Apple, Podbean, and Spotify. It's also available on the Cecil Taylor Ministries YouTube channel.