No One Knows the Day or Hour
36 “Now concerning that day and hour no one knows—neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son —except the Father only. 37 As the days of Noah were, so the coming of the Son of Man will be. 38 For in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day Noah boarded the ark. 39 They didn’t know until the flood came and swept them all away. So this is the way the coming of the Son of Man will be: 40 Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and one left. 41 Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and one left. 42 Therefore be alert, since you don’t know what day your Lord is coming. 43 But know this: If the homeowner had known what time the thief was coming, he would have stayed alert and not let his house be broken into. 44 This is why you also must be ready, because the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.
Preparing for Advent is a little bit of a misnomer, especially in light of this passage. We are not to prepare for Advent as much experience Advent.
1) Be expectant!
The people of God had been expecting a Messiah…just not this way. They had been longing for a Deliverer but not a delivery! Mary was expecting the Christ child and would deliver Him in such a unique way that the entire world would carry on about their normal lives as though nothing ever happened. Christ had come just as promised and even those who were expecting the Messiah missed Him. From the passage above, we are reminded that as the people of God, we need to be expecting Christ and be ever watchful for His return. Advent, which means “coming” is not something we just expect to happen. When we are expectant, we are readying ourselves for it! Just as a pregnant woman would prepare a room, crib, and be certain that life would change, so we must be expectant and make adjustments knowing that Christ has come and will one day come again!
2) Be ready!
The innkeeper was not ready for such a crowded night when Mary and Joseph needed a room to give birth to Messiah. There was simply no room. There are many ways that readiness plays into this picture of Advent. Mary was the chosen one but did not feel ready for such a task. Nor the disciples when Jesus chose them and left them to change the world. This passage in Matthew vividly reminds us that Christ has chosen us to be ready and available for His use NOW, just as Noah was readying Himself by doing all God told him to do. Being ready and getting ready are two completely different things. We need to be ready when Christ comes again!
3) Be alert!
There were people looking for the Messiah but they missed him. There were Wisemen who had traveled far to see Him and they eventually found him. Certainly there are people around us who too are looking for Jesus. It is imperative that we be diligent and watchful for the way God is working around us, drawing people to Himself. God lead the Wisemen by a star and He may use us as a small light to lead others to The Light of The World. Be alert to the ways Jesus is showing up around you. Pay attention to the way He is showing up. Don’t miss what He is doing!