Author: Martin Carver
Reflection: v. 4, ‘prepare the way of the Lord’
‘Prepare the way of the Lord!’ That’s what Advent is about, right? We take a little time to slow down and get ready to welcome the coming Christ. More than slowing down and merely waiting for the arrival of Christ in the world, however, we are told to ‘prepare.’ How do we prepare though? Are we even equipped to do the preparation?
I find the beginning of this passage interesting. We open with a list of emperors, governors, rulers, and high priests. These were the powers that were. The top dogs. The head honchos. That is what makes it all the more interesting when the word of God comes to John in the wilderness. John isn’t one of the elite. He isn’t in a position of power. Even so, the word of God comes to him. I think we often can convince ourselves that we are insignificant. That because we do not occupy positions of authority we cannot make a difference. This scripture shows us, however, that God is at work in the wilderness. God is hard at work in the margins and in every day people. God is equipping and preparing us so that we might prepare the way of the Lord.
You do not have to be an emperor to make a difference. You do not have to be a governor or ruler to make change. You do not have to be a high priest to proclaim the love of God to a broken and hurting world. You simply have to listen for the voice of God in the wilderness. You have to keep your eyes open for God at work in the margins and in the hum drum of daily life. During this Advent season, let us keep our eyes peeled and our ears open. Let us slow down and wait and listen. And let us prepare.
Prayer Help us to prepare the way, O Lord. Remind us that you have equipped us and prepared us.