I have been reading Scotty Smith's prayers this Advent; they have been my companions when I come to the Father; they have opened my eyes to be grateful for so many Advent blessings that I did not count. Today I borrow his words and make them mine.
992. I am grateful for the one who prepared the way, John the Baptist, who was the voice of the desert; who proclaimed your coming and the repentance of sins.
993. Thank you for becoming flesh and taberanacling among us.
"Jesus, I praise you for becoming “flesh” and “tabernacling” among us for just the right amount of time. Though equal to, yet distinct from the Father, you didn’t consider your glory something to be tightly grasped or held onto selfishly. Rather, you emptied yourself by becoming a man—but not just any ordinary man, a servant-man, the Servant of the Lord… the second Adam, our Savior… my Savior"(1)
994. Thank you because you accomplished everything necessary for he redemption of your people.
"In your thirty-three years of incarnate life, you accomplished everything necessary for the redemption of the people for whom you lived and died… but also for the restoration of the world you created and love. Be magnified, adored, regaled, worshiped and loved, Lord Jesus. What a wonderful merciful Savior you are! What a God who is so mighty to save!"(1)
995. Thank you because you reign with grace and truth.
"I cannot sing Isaac Watt’s great Advent hymn, “Joy to the Word,” without thinking of John’s telling of your birth narrative. For you are presently ruling the world with your grace and truth—the grace and truth with which you are full. You’re making the nations prove the wonders of your love… as the gospel runs from heart to heart, and nation to nation." (1)
"From the fullness of your grace we keep receiving one blessing after another—one blessing on top of another. The blessings of your imputed righteousness… the blessings of perpetual favor with God… the blessings your intercession and advocacy… the blessings of your Spirit’s work in our lives… the blessings citizenship in heaven… the blessing of knowing the good work you have begun in us, and in the cosmos, will be brought to completion! Hail the incarnate deity!" (1)
1003- 1006. O, Your Word, Lord, your Word, I am grateful for it!
"Jesus, I’m thankful to know that every word of the Word, in one way or another, is ultimately about you. Every command drives me to you. Every promise is fulfilled in you. Every story whispers your name… points to your glory… and proffers your grace. This is why I love the Bible, all of the Bible, more than ever."(2)
"Jesus, I praise you for being Immanuel—God with us and God for us. Your presence and your presents are all that we need… much more than we realize… and way beyond all we could have ever hoped for or imagined."(2)
1009. I am grateful that You reign sovereignly over all circumstances.
"You’re at work in all things for your glory and for our good… in the obvious and in the not-so-obvious… in our gains and in our pains… in what we “get” and in the things which seem to contradict Who we know… when we’re “feeling the love” and when we’re feeling very lonely… when the gospel makes all the sense in the world to us and when we’re tempted to say with John the Baptist, “Are you the Messiah, or should we be looking for another?” (2)
1010. I am grateful that YOU are the Messiah, the One Way, the One Truth , the One Life. (2)
1011. I thank you, O Lord, that you have not finished with me; that nothing can separate me from you.
"Absolutely nothing can separate us from your love, for we’re been called according to the Father’s purpose, which will never fail nor falter. He “knew” us—he set his affection upon us before the world began, and he will continue to provide everything necessary to complete the work of the gospel in our lives. We cannot not be more justified than we already are and we’ll be as glorified as any mortal man ever will be. Joy to the world indeed. Joy to us." (2)
1012. Thank you for being the Shepherd-Savior that You are.
"Having laid down your life as the Lamb of God, you have risen and are now the standing shepherd promised by Micah—relentlessly caring… vigilantly protecting… faithfully providing for us. You never slouch, sleep nor slumber. You’re constantly cherishing and caring for us. You know us by our names and needs. Be praised and worshiped, O good and engaged Shepherd."(3)
1013. Thank you because we lack nothing we need.
"Jesus, because of your great love for us in the gospel, we lack nothing we need. Though we don’t get everything we want, we do have everything we need for life and godliness… and a whole lot more. We praise you it’s green pastures and quiet waters to which you lead us—all for the restoring of our tired, weary, broken, rebellious souls. Your kindness is without equivalent." (3)
1014. Thank you because you nourish us all the time.
" Jesus, you nourish us all the time, even when enemies are close by and threatening. Your generous anointing overflows us for the blessing of others. To follow you is to be followed by the fragrance of your goodness and love." (3)
Open my eyes to see you this Advent season, open my eyes that I may not miss what does it mean in my daily life that You became Man.
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