I feel the effects of the Fall, found in Genesis 3 and all over Scripture, every single day.
Today we gathered as staff, heavy, praying for the many who are looking at death, looking at broken relationships, looking at broken hearts. In that, we pray for those who are not only affected by the wreckage of the curse happening or being done to them, but also the sin that people have done themselves, scarring their lives and the lives of those around them.
I am keenly aware of the many ways I choose to believe the lie of the enemy over the sure word of God, then running to hide from my choices that have wreaked havoc in the world around me.
Advent. A season in our Church calendar where we can actively take time to reflect upon the coming of Christ, something we know has happened, but something we too long to come again. This isn’t esoteric or far off, but something we hold tangibly in our hands every single day. The curse and its many fruits bleed into every moment of our lives, and we writhe and groan, waiting for what is wrong to be made right.
Even in the curses found in the Fall, we find the whisper of a promise of hope, that although the serpent slithers and makes his way into every life, someone would come, and that someone would crush him.
Fast forward a bit to Abraham, a man in relationship with God in this world full of darkness. Even in his relationship, he questions God and what God’s plans are in relation to what he sees his circumstances to be. God is making some pretty big promises and with what Abraham can see, it doesn’t really add up. Yet, Abraham, still Abram at this time, does something that only few before him had done: he believes.
His belief leads him to act upon what God tells him to do and something beautiful happens in that place. The finishing act of this chapter ends in a miraculous and glorious event, a covenant sealed by God and God alone.
Advent. A season in our Church calendar where we recall and remind ourselves of the promises God made, the covenant that He made with His people. Although the full fruition of Jesus Christ in flesh, God with us, wasn’t what Abraham would have known, we live into this covenant, these promises, and similarly, a future hope. This belief in what God has done, what God did, should lead us to act and live different lives, something beautiful happening in the places here and now because of what happened then and there.
Advent. A season in our Church calendar calling us to fully be the people of the covenant, a covenant made and given as a gift. This means exactly what Abraham was also promised, doing this as a family, as a community, as the bride and body of Christ Jesus; even we are grafted in. This both/and season of longing and living into Jesus is not just for these short weeks, but a receiving of His grace each and every day.
As we look at the world around us, it is all too easy to stop believing and start questioning what God said to be true. Most days, it really does feel as if the serpent is winning, our relationships wanting, our health failing, our heel being bruised. Friends, do not forget the promises He has made. Hope is found in Who is coming and Who has come.
So I keep coming back to this simple prayer: I believe, help my unbelief. Look to what He has done Himself, what He invites us into, and believe. You don’t have to hide.