LIVING HOPE

ADVENT reflections

As we journey towards Christmas this year, we know that everything will be different. 
To help us on our pilgrimage, we asked 25 people to prepare a meditation
for us to read and listen to every day through Advent. 
We are delighted to share their work with you.

God bless you as you read, listen and pray.

DECEMBER 16

2 Peter 3: 1 – 9   

1 Dear friends, this is now my second letter to you. I have written both of them as reminders to stimulate you to wholesome thinking. 2 I want you to recall the words spoken in the past by the holy prophets and the command given by our Lord and Saviour through your apostles. Above all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our ancestors died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.” But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens came into being and the earth was formed out of water and by water. By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed. By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.

But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

Reflection

Today we are thinking about the second coming of Christ. I wonder what your thoughts are: does it scare you or does it fill you with joy.

My grandmother really wanted to be alive when Jesus returned, she looked forward to that day. She died when I was just 7 years old.

When you look at what’s happening in the world you could be inclined to think, surely Jesus is coming back soon because things can’t get any worse… can they?  Why has Jesus not returned yet?  Why are generations living and dying without experiencing the reconciliation of all things?

We can find some of the answer in this passage.

Peter is writing of the Day of the Lord and he warns his readers that people will laugh at us and say, ’Where is this coming He promised?’  It may seem crazy to live life waiting for everything to be put right by God. It also can be difficult to understand why, if God is so concerned with ridding God’s world of sin and wickedness, God should wait so very long. It appears to make much more sense to think of Jesus’ return as a fairy tale and to believe that what is will go on forever.  

Peter then puts it all into perspective: God is not in a hurry, ‘With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day’ (v.8).

God is not being slow in keeping his promise. This ‘delay,’ as we might call it is not down to Gods disinterest, rather it’s down to his patience. And the reason He is patient is that He doesn’t want anyone to perish, but for everyone to come to repentance and belief in Him.  ‘God isn’t late, he is restraining Himself on account of all peoples, giving everyone the opportunity to choose to follow Him, because out of His great love He doesn’t want anyone lost. He’s giving everyone space and time to choose him, to choose life.

I wonder what you think of the Second Coming of Christ, is it a day you long for or a day your dread?

Are there people around you who need to know the love and saving power of Jesus before that day? Maybe today is the day that you tell them.