Expect Christ: Day 5

Today is Thursday, Dec. 1, the fifth day in the Advent season.

Morning

Praise and Thanksgiving. Today, we begin by prayerfully reading Psalm 91.

Let’s also pray a prayer of praise together, one leading us to praise God throughout the day:

“Glorious God, touch our hearts this day so we may better comprehend your power and might. Fill us with your revelatory grace so we may pour out your truth on others, and may you then be further glorified. Where we have words to bless you, may we speak them; where we have songs, may we sing them; where we are speechless, may the Spirit squeeze from us groans that go beyond words. Amen.”

Confession. It’s seldom difficult for us to identify where we have violated God’s will, if only we will take time to stop and consider our actions. As we find those moments, let’s surrender them to God, knowing he will cleanse us while also exhorting us, “Go and sin no more.

Petitions. Let’s focus again today on the spiritually and physically needy around us, naming individuals in our hearts or out loud. How might God use us to fulfill any prayers we lift up today?

Scripture. Isaiah 4:2-6. Would we welcome searing changes in our lives if they would result in holiness and joy?

Silence.

Noon

Let’s continue to pray this prayer together daily:

“Lord, we have entered a season of expectation. We remember the Israelites’ past desire for a savior to arrive, and we mirror what they felt as we long now for the return of Jesus Christ. Come Lord Jesus, come! We pray this with some trepidation, knowing we never feel completely ready for such a day, and that loved ones around us may not be ready. And yet we continue to pray, Come Lord Jesus, come! We trust that your grace at your return will so overwhelm sin and death that all will be set right. As we pray for your full arrival, teach us how to make ourselves ready, living as watchful people. Amen.”

Night

At a minimum, let’s spend some significant time in a quiet, reflective state before retiring for the night. Embrace the day’s spiritual victories and release the failures. If you’re following the meditation practices outlined earlier, this can be an excellent time to listen for guidance, particularly if something is vexing you, such as a direction you need to go in life.

And as you sleep, may visions of the New Jerusalem astonish you.

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