Scripture Text: Hebrews 13:2
Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels without knowing it.
Imagine that you are at home one evening. You’ve just finished dinner and the dishwasher is humming with the satisfaction of a job well-done. All the leftovers are put away in the refrigerator. You have settled in for the evening—full stomach, warm house, a time of togetherness, the house locked up and the alarm is set. You look at the clock: 9:00—just in time to settle down to watch that recording of “The Good Wife” that you haven’t had time to watch. Just then, there is a knock on the door. Who in the world? You peer out through the peephole and see a man standing there—dirty, disheveled, unshaven, a far-away look in his eyes. Hmmm! Not sure what to do…maybe he will just go away.
After all, the world is a scary place. You don’t know who this is. And he was so dirty…really, really dirty…The man is dirty because he has traveled a great many miles on the open, dusty road. He is disheveled because he is tired. He has gone from house to house asking for help. Most people do not answer the door. He knows they’re at home. He can see the eyes through the peephole and hear them inside. But who can blame them? It’s been days since he’s had a chance to shave. He’s almost at the end of his rope. He’s worried and afraid and he’s sure it shows in his eyes. So he turns and heads back down the block toward the car that only made it this far. He has no idea what to do. He has no money left after the long trip—no money for gas, no money to fix the car, no money for food for him and his wife. And the time is almost here. The baby is coming. But there’s doesn’t seem to be room anywhere he goes. Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus…
So, what ARE you expecting? For what are you waiting? For what are you preparing? God comes in ways that we never expect. God comes into those places where the needs are the greatest, where the hurt is the deepest, where the wilderness seems to close around us. And there…there God comes. While we are waiting on the world to change, God comes. While we are wondering why someone doesn’t fix things, God comes. While we are watching riots and marches, poverty and wars, and politicians arguing over who is in control and bemoaning the fact that the world seems to be coming apart, God comes. On the darkest of nights, when the world is so loud we almost can’t stand it, God tiptoes in through the one door of our lives that we forgot to lock, forgot to decorate, perhaps forgot was even there, and is born in a stable and laid in a manger because there was no room. While we are waiting for the world to change, God knocks on the door to our lives and shows us that it the change has already begun. Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus…
The Advent mystery is the beginning of the end in all of us that is not yet Christ. (Thomas Merton)
FOR TODAY: Through what door is God coming into your life? What have you done to make room for God in your life? Be the change that you are waiting to see.
Grace and Peace,