[#pictureAdvent] December 18: WAIT

By Rev. Pam McMillan
Saint Paul’s United Methodist Church
Tallahassee, FL

First, read Titus 2:11-14

Let me tell you about my favorite Christmas memory.

When I was in the 7th grade, I had made up my mind that I didn’t want any presents that year for Christmas. I didn’t really need or want anything. And I was old enough to know that there were children that didn’t get any presents at all. I figured that I could wait till next year to get presents.

I told my mother that I didn’t want any gifts. This did not go over well with my mother, the gift-giving queen. She loves giving gifts and would not be deprived of spoiling one of her children on Christmas Day.  A compromise was made that all I would receive on Christmas morning was a stocking, no more and no less.

Christmas morning comes around and I wake up in the morning to find a big surprise in the living room. A 6-foot-long stocking. That’s right. My brilliant mother found a six-foot-long loophole in our agreement. Out of the generosity of her heart, she was the one who could not wait to give a gift.

During the time of Advent, we spend a lot of time talking about waiting for the coming King. Our verse today says “We wait for the blessed hope and glorious appearance of our great God and savior Jesus Christ.”

We know the day will come when Jesus will come back, but we must wait for it, even if it is challenging.

What we don’t always do a good job of remembering is that we are not the only ones waiting. I believe that God is on the edge of his seat, impatiently waiting to gift us with faith, hope, and love.

And I think God is waiting to give us the greatest gift of all – Jesus Christ. I don’t know what that day will be like when Jesus comes back to earth. But I do know that this gift of God will far exceed our expectations, like when you expect a regular stocking and receive one that is 6-feet long.

And so we wait for that day. But we remember that God waits with us.

Discussion/Reflection Questions:

1.       What is something that you’ve had to wait for anxiously? Was it as good or better than you had hoped?

2.       What is something you’re currently waiting for? Do you think it will be as good as you’re hoping?

3.       How can we show God how much we love God during this time of waiting?