Prepare The Way For The Lord

Written by Becky Perkins

Tangled Christmas tree lights are something I hate to straighten out and untangle when I put up decorations each year. Each year when I put the Christmas decorations away, I intend to take time and patience to put them away in an orderly manner and prepare a way to make the next year’s decorating time go more smoothly. But, every year, I am ready to put the decorations away, and I am in a hurry to get it done. So, every year, I have to deal with tangled up Christmas tree lights, because I did not prepare the way for the next year.
 
In Luke 3:1-6, John the Baptist was the person God called to herald the way of the coming Messiah. In Biblical times when a king was traveling to a town or region to meet the people, a herald would go ahead of the king to announce his coming and call for everyone to make the way smooth and straight for the king. The way was to be cleared of debris, the crooked path was to be made straight, valleys were to be filled in, mountains were to be leveled out, and rough places were to be made smooth. This process would require powerful construction, and a forceful grinding was required of the rocky places. This process took time and patience. The person doing the work would need help from others to help them get the job done. Once the way was made clear, the procession of the king was a grand and safe celebration. People rejoiced when the king arrived and spent days in the festivities.
 
I have had times in my spiritual life when I have felt that my spirit was in a tangled up mess. There are times when I felt like the rough road that needed smoothing. There are times I was in a valley and needed the Holy Spirit to fill in those deep places of unbelief and discouragement. There have been times when my spirit needed those mountains of self-sufficiency, idolatry, and pride to be leveled out so that I would be humble and ready for God’s use.
 
The process to make a life of humility for the use of the king requires some grinding, shaping, and refining to make the soul level and straight for the arrival of the king. This process takes time, patience, and often the help of others to get us on the straight path. The only way to get the life straight, level, and safe is to spend time with God on a consistent and regular basis each week. Time in His Word and in prayer. It takes patience to work out the rough places with the Holy Spirit. The working out of our salvation is something we have to give over to God and let his Holy Spirit chip away the rough edges and make them straight. It takes time to study the Word with other people. We need to have a village of supporters around us who will pray with us and for us. We cannot hurry the process. The Holy Spirit will work within his time table. This process of working out our salvation, often called sanctification for those of us on this side of the cross, will continue on until we reach that time of entering his kingdom.

Next Christmas, when I take down all of the Christmas lights, I hope I remember that the process will go much smoother if I only take the time to prepare the way for the next Christmas.

 

“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 mankind will see God’s salvation” Luke 3:4-6

 


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