08 December 2007

Advent Reading

This morning for devotions I was reading out of The Message Bible paraphrase. Mary's visit with Elizabeth was vividly brought to life. I wanted to share verses 42b to 45 with you:
"Why am I so blessed that
the mother of my Lord visits me?
The moment the sound of your
greeting entered my ears,
The babe in my womb
skipped like a lamb for sheer joy.
Blessed woman, who believed what God said,
believed every word would come true!"
I just loved the line that the fetal John "skipped like a lamb" at the approach of Mary and the new-formed Jesus. It's a great foreshadowing of John's reaction when Jesus comes to be baptized.

This idea of sensing the incarnate God and 'skipping like a lamb' before him is echoed by St. Augustine, who wrote in The Confessions,
"...It is my belief in you that calls out to you--the faith that is your gift to me, which you breathed into me by the humanity your Son assumed, taking up his mission of proclaiming you."
It is also a reminder of the excitement of the Advent season, the enthusiasm with which we should welcome the Christ child into our lives this season. This time of year is a time to recapture the joy of Christ coming into my life--not only to celebrate Christ's birth but to be born again myself.

And those last lines: "blessed woman, who believed what God said, believed every word would come true!" That's the key to gaining this new birth--to receiving this Christmas gift that the Christian calendar provides for us year in and year out.

1 comment:

5Gustos said...

I just realized that I can vividly imagine what it would look like for a "lamb to skip for sheer joy" It would look very similar to how our baby goats skip and jump and perform acrobatics because it's fun. That's neat. I enjoy The Message bible by Blanco as well.

We are enjoying our Advent book very much this year. You might want to look into it. It's called "Jotham's Journey" by Arnold Ytreeide. There are 2 more in the series. Tabitha's Travels is the second one. They went out of print last year, I believe, but I am sure you could find them at Amazon or Ebay. Well worth the price. It's an adventurous storybook for kids, but also teaches a LOT about the prophecies and times of Jesus.