Posted on Dec 13, 2017 by Meghan Harmison
Dear Salem Family,
The season of Advent is about waiting and seeking. I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty horrible at waiting. I’d like to think I’m good about seeking, or at least observing. But, like a lot of people, sometimes I need to be knocked over the head with something before I realize what’s happening.
I read this today and it spoke to me, so I wanted to share it with you: “Advent also reminds us that most people missed Jesus because they were looking for him in the bright, shiny lights of power, politics, and revolution. But Jesus came as the Light of the World, and light was made for darkness, but nobody was looking there — no one was looking for a manger; they were looking for a throne.
Don’t miss this: it’s not that most of Israel wasn’t looking for him ... they ALL were ... it is that they didn’t recognize the way he came. It is in your dark night of the soul the Light of the World can be seen most clearly. Seek him. Look for him. Ask for eyes to see. Let your soul direct its attention to the manger of your story ... not the palace.
He might not be found in the bright, shiny light of expectations, but in the humble, gritty places we didn’t bargain for.”
Jen Hatmaker wrote this, and I know I use a lot of her stuff, but her voice has really hit me lately, and this in particular spoke to me. Everyone’s 2017 has been different. We have all endured different things, but I think we can all agree that no matter what the year has brought us, we know Jesus is a healer and redeemer. He is good; He is powerful. In this season of Advent, we’re reminded to wait, and to wait well. We are to be faithful in watching and waiting for the hope of resurrection, no matter how broken something might be.
In this season of waiting, like I said before, I also need to seek Jesus. And He might not show up how I expect Him to. I like to think that when I pray, I’ll get a very direct answer and I will be shown immediately what I need to do. But, like Jen says, Jesus might not be found in the bright, shiny light of expectation. He may be found in a place I didn’t bargain for. He might be found in the uncomfortable places, where I’m pushed to be better or do better.
Where are you waiting for Jesus to show up? Have you been hoping it will knock you over the head and be super obvious? I’m here to tell you, that’s probably not how it’s going to happen. As you think about where you’re waiting for Him to show up, be open to the possibility it might not be how you expect. He is a wonderful Savior, but He came in a manger. He came to be the Light for the World, not in a palace and not on a throne. He came humbly and not as people had anticipated. Maybe, that’s where we need to look, in the unexpected places, in the places that are unlikely.
In Christ’s love,
Director of Adult Ministries and Outreach