“But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.” – Romans 8:25 (NASB)
Many of us know of or follow the Advent tradition every December. To us, it heralds the coming of Jesus, Immanuel, God with us. We wonder again at the gift given to us by God, and our hearts fill with anticipation and joy.
However, we rob ourselves if we experience such wondrous joy only four weeks out of the year. Advent is a thing to be experienced every day for it means the “arrival of a notable person, thing, or event.” But “every day” isn’t quite accurate, either. Advent is to be felt throughout the day. As believers in Christ and through the Holy Spirit, Jesus’ coming inhabits the seconds, minutes, and hours of our lives. In him, we live, move, breathe, and have our being (Acts 17:22-31).
Also, Advent can refer to another coming, the second coming of Jesus. We know it will occur one day, the same as the Jewish people expected the coming of the Messiah. He fulfilled his first promise to us. Because he did, we wait and hope with perseverance for the second promise. We know Jesus will come again (John 14:1-4); he is God and does not lie (Numbers 23:19). That assurance gives us confidence. It frees us to experience the joy of everyday Advent even as we celebrate the baby Jesus who came to bear witness to the truth (John 18:37) and to set us free (Luke 4:16-21).