Joy of Every Longing Heart

This has been an incredible Advent Season, already. Here at Bridgeway Church, we have joined thousands across the U.S. in the recently released, “Long Expected Jesus.” It is an Advent journey that seeks to draw us in to the coming of Jesus Christ and help us prepare to receive Him this Advent. And within it, in following the devotional, praying each day, and seeking the Lord’s will – He has directed and guided us along the way.

From the song “Come Thou Long Expected Jesus,” written by Charles Wesley in the 1700’s, the last line of the first verse states, “Joy of Every Longing Heart,” I am reminded that it is surely God’s desire for His Son, our Savior, to be just that to all of us.

The people of Israel waited for centuries. They endured incredible hardship and challenge at the expense of the Romans and the religious elite that held power over them. The people so longed for the Messiah. For 400 years between the closing of the Old Testament and the opening of the New, I can just picture the desperation that they felt. The sense of longing that overshadowed them. And yet, for generations in that window – the longing intensified.

Until the First Advent arrived, and when God’s Son was sent in accordance with God’s will. Galatians 4, v.4 records: “In the fullness of time, God sent His Son into the world…” That is, in His infinite grace, love, and wisdom, at the precise moment of impact and in all of time as we know it, God came in the flesh for us.

That is what Advent is about. It’s about God’s love coming in the Incarnate Christ to set forth a new era and a new mandate. And that is, Jesus is the answer – He is the One – He is the prescription for all that is wrong. Advent is also about our preparation in the expectation of His arrival. It is not a “one and done.” He didn’t just come nearly 2,000 years ago. He comes and He shows up, today. He is “God with us” not “God was with us, at one time, in history.” He is here. And He will come again!

Come thou long expected Jesus,
Born to set thy people free;
From our fears and sins release us,
Let us find our rest in Thee…

We would love to have you and yours join us this Advent Season. We can believe, belong, and become together, and there is no better time to come, to know, and to believe (again) than Christmas. Let us encounter Him and journey together! Blessings to you all!

Porter

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