Stir up Your power, O Lord, and come, that by Your protection we may be rescued from the threatening perils of our sins and saved by Your mighty deliverance; for You live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
He tells us these things so that we will be ready. And not just ready, but eagerly awaiting and expecting it. That we will long and yearn for it, the way that children long to grow up, the way that children long for Christmas morning to come and stay awake watching and looking for it, so that when it happens, when that day comes and the Son of Man is seen descending upon the clouds, we will stand up and lift up our heads to see our redemption.
There is perhaps no other season of the church year that better embodies what we experience as Christians than the season of Advent. Observing Advent means learning to wait. It’s a time to wait and to watch, a time to look and to listen. Advent is the season of the now but not yet. It proclaims that the Lord is come, and yet coming still again. It tells us to look up for, for our redemption is drawing near but not yet fully here. It announces the release of the prisoners, but not yet for John the Baptist. In Advent, Christmas is nigh, but not yet here. Advent teaches us to wait.