Today is Monday, the sixth of December, 2021, the second Monday of Advent.
May the peace of Christ be with you!
Nineteen days until Christmas. I’m planning to get some Christmas gifts ordered today. We have some lists to look at, for S and R.
Yesterday was a fine day. Our Zoom gathering was okay, and lunch was pretty good. I placed a grocery order with Albertson’s, for delivery later in the afternoon, and C went out to get a few things, including some produce items that Albertson’s seemed to be out of. Albertson’s also made a somewhat silly substitution, in my opinion, which is causing me to have to make an additional trip to a store, today. I had ordered a fifteen ounce can of tomato sauce, Hunts brand. Rather than substitute a house brand of the same size, they substituted one can of Hunts eight ounces. That does me no good. They should have substituted two cans, at least, so I had my fifteen ounces.
In their defense, I do have the ability to go in and check substitution options. I suppose I will have to start doing that with every item, since they do not give me the option of rejecting their substitutions, like some stores do.
We finally got our Christmas ornaments on the tree, yesterday. Here are a few pics of the tree, featuring our new ornaments for this year.
I really don’t have anything else on my “plate” for today. I’ll try to come up with something at least semi-productive.
TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL AND PRAYERS
When a man's ways please the LORD, he makes even his enemies to be at peace with him. (Proverbs 16:7 ESV)
Trust in the LORD, and do good; dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness. Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him, and he will act. (Psalms 37:3-5 ESV)
Today I am grateful:
1. for the peace of the season 2. that You are my light and my salvation 3. that I have neither poverty or riches in my life, but that I have enough 4. for help in recognizing the things that are vanity 5. that, because You are my light and my salvation, I have nothing to fear in this world
Turn away mine eyes from beholding vanity.
(Psalms 119:37 KJV)
O men, how long shall my honor be turned into shame? How long will you love vain words and seek after lies? Selah. (Psalms 4:2 ESV)
Remove far from me falsehood and lying; give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with the food that is needful for me, (Proverbs 30:8 ESV)
Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity. (Ecclesiastes 1:2 ESV)
Scriptures and Prayers from Seeking God’s Face: Praying with the Bible through the Year
ADVENT – DAY NINE
The LORD is my light and my salvation— so why should I be afraid? (Psalms 27:1 NLT)
I pause during this quietness to center in on the presence of the Lord, and to block out distractions that call for my attention.
Endow the king with your justice, O God, the royal son with your righteousness. May he judge your people in righteousness, your afflicted ones with justice. (Psalms 72:1-2 NIV)
May he rule from sea to sea and from the River to the ends of the earth. May the desert tribes bow before him and his enemies lick the dust. May the kings of Tarshish and of distant shores bring tribute to him. May the kings of Sheba and Seba present him gifts. May all kings bow down to him and all nations serve him. (Psalms 72:8-11 NIV)
In the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar—when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, Herod tetrarch of Galilee, his brother Philip tetrarch of Iturea and Traconitis, and Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene— during the high-priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness. He went into all the country around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet: "A voice of one calling in the wilderness, 'Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him. Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill made low. The crooked roads shall become straight, the rough ways smooth. And all people will see God's salvation.'" (Luke 3:1-6 NIV)
DWELLING: SILENCE AND MEDITATION
As I read these passages again slowly, I look for words or phrases that stir my heart and soul within me. I slowly repeat them, praying my thoughts, desires, and feelings, and enjoy the presence of the Lord.
Father, Jesus is our King. And while I realize that Psalm 72, likely written by Solomon, was composed as a song/prayer for the physical king of Israel, at the time, I can easily transfer the thoughts forward to refer to Jesus. I do know that Jesus will judge Your people in righteousness, because He is the embodiment of righteousness. I am confident that He will judge the afflicted with justice and mercy.
I look forward to the day when Jesus will rule “from sea to sea and from the River to the ends of the earth.” All the earth will one day bow before Him, and His enemies will, indeed, “lick the dust.” Along with the psalmist, I pray that “all kings bow down to Him and all nations serve Him.” What a day that will be when these things come to pass. As we celebrate the peace of the Advent season, this is a part of our future that we have to look forward to.
As ancient Israel prepared for the first Advent of Jesus Christ, Your servant John began to preach. In fact, Jesus had already come as the baby, as the Christ-child. John the Baptizer began preparing human hearts for His kingdom. He sought, just as we do today, to “prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for Him.” As we anticipate the second coming of our Savior, we acknowledge the effects of His coming. “Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill made low. The crooked roads shall become straight, the rough ways smooth.” We pray for these things to come to pass as we endeavor to prepare our world for His return.
As I ponder these, things, Father, turn my heart and my eyes away from vanity, from everything that the “preacher” considered to be vanity, in Ecclesiastes. May we not be people who love vain words and seek after lies. I am grateful that You have given me neither poverty nor riches (though some would say we are “rich”), but that you have provided enough for our needs, along with some extra that we might give away, in order that others might be blessed.
I praise You that You are my light and my salvation, and that I have nothing to fear in this world.
"Father, I am weary of all that is wrong with the world - murder of the innocents, a smeared and wrecked creation, tyrant-oppressed poor, hunger-withered children, exploited women, forgotten elderly, invisible homeless. I long to see that all these enemies - Yours and mine - will be, once and for all, condemned, and all things crooked made straight. Set me to making way for Your justice with renewed vigor. In Jesus our Deliverer's name we pray, amen."
Wait patiently for the LORD. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the LORD. (Psalms 27:14 NLT)
Even so, come, Lord Jesus!
May the LORD richly bless both you and your children. May you be blessed by the LORD, who made heaven and earth.
(Psalms 115:14-15 NLT)
Grace and peace, friends.