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flame Christmas is a time of waiting. For kids, the anticipation of gifts, for parents the angst of buying gifts and cooking meals. The Advent season offers a time to reflect, to remember that we’re in a joyful expectation of the coming act God puts into motion to rescue humanity. Many stories from the Bible, including those around the time of Jesus’ birth, recount moments when people waited in expectation for God to respond.

Stories like Isaiah’s calling (here I am, Lord); all of the minor prophets sharing the message from God in the present moment; to Advent related stories in the New Testament like Mary Magnificat (Luke 1:46-55); John the Baptist (Luke 3:4-6); the visitation of the shepherds (Luke 2:8), and more.

The ways that God spoke in these stories are the ways that God speaks today–we can call out and God should respond.

These stories of people waiting for encounter reflect our own expectation that God can and will speak to us, now, in our moments. Wherever you’re at in your own spiritual journey, perhaps you’re going through significant struggle, perhaps you’re in a time of deep encouragement and joy, in your space you can call out in waiting expectation for a new encounter with God.