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“A voice of one calling: ‘In the wilderness prepare the way for the Lord; make straight in the desert a highway for our God.’” —Isaiah 40:3

It is customary for many, at the first signs of spring, to begin a time when preparations are made for a thorough cleaning of every room in the house. The phrase “Spring Cleaning” is popular for a reason! I suppose there is something about the signs of new life all around—new flowers blooming, grass growing, and increasing sunshine—that motivate many of us to give everything a fresh, new look.

No matter where we live and no matter the traditions of each season, the Bible reminds us that any season can be the right time to “prepare the way for the Lord.” Traditionally, the Advent Season is a time of focused preparation, examining our readiness for the coming of the Lord.

Of course, that is something all Christians are called to do all the time. Advent gives us a focused time to do this together as the people of God.

How are we preparing for His return? This involves more than updating our Christmas shopping lists and putting up decorations. That is not the kind of preparation Scripture calls us to. Our preparations also involve confessing any sins that have interfered with our worship and service to God and others.

We also prepare by taking stock of our priorities in regard to serving those in need and reaching out to others who also need to prepare to meet the coming Messiah. This is the true focus of Advent, a season of preparing.

Prayer for the Week:

Merciful God, who sent Your messengers the prophets to
preach repentance and prepare the way for our salvation:
Give us grace to heed their warnings and forsake our sins,
that we may greet with joy the coming of Jesus Christ our
Redeemer; who lives and reigns with You and the Holy
Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen. (from The Book of Common Prayer)

Charles W. Christian is managing editor of Holiness Today.

Written for Coffee Break with Holiness Today.