Advent Meditation Week 2, 2021

by Dec 7, 2021

This week we celebrate the feast of the Immaculate Conception. Thus, Isaiah’s prophecy is particularly appropriate: “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” (Isaiah 7:14) I invite you to meditate through this prophecy word by word seeking God’s invitation throughout. Imagine not only the meaning of this prophecy for the people of Israel but also for yourself, your family, and your country today. Pray through the meditations and return to them throughout the week.

“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

Therefore is a bold pronouncement, a word that indicates cause and effect. What is the cause…the need that this sign will answer?

“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

Who is giving this sign? What does it mean that the Lord himself, not the Lord through the aid of another, is breaking into the world in such a way? How does the Lord break into your life even now?

“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

Will, shall, and shall (as opposed to might and may) are words of certainty. Spend time meditating on the significance of the length of time that God had in mind the plan for a virgin to conceive a son that would save the world.

“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

What does it mean to be given something? Something that is given cannot be earned or bought; on our end, we can merely receive a gift. How can you open yourself to receive the gifts God desires to give you?

“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

Who does God desire to give this sign? Do you believe that God desires to give you signs of his love?

“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

Signs point to something beyond themselves. What sign are we waiting for? What signs has God given you that point to a deeper reality in Him?

“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

What does it truly mean to behold something? Where can you behold God in your own life?

“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

A virgin is pure and undefiled. Mary was most pure because both for and through Jesus she was conceived immaculately: without sin, redeemed, justified, purified, sanctified. How does this gift affect your life?

“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

Mary, through the Holy Spirit, conceived and bore Jesus into the world, a living tabernacle for Christ. We too are called to conceive and bear Christ into the world. How are you doing this in your own life?

“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

A name is an intimate thing. What does it mean that God has revealed to us the name of his Son? Receive this as a precious gift. 

“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

I AM is the name of God given by God to Moses. Now, another name is given to us: Immanuel, God with us. Sit with this name and let it resonate in your heart.

baby john leaped in his mothers womb susanna katherine
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I have recently found this parable linking in my mind to the story of the Visitation. Mary did not only bear Christ into the world by carrying him in her womb for nine months as a mother carries a child. She literally bore him to others at the moment of the visitation as she took Christ to minister to John and Elizabeth. Through Mary, Jesus was able to begin his ministry in vitro. His presence in Mary’s womb caused John to leap for joy at the presence of the Lord and Elizabeth to proclaim, “Who am I that the mother of my Lord should come to me?” (Luke 1:43) Their lives were transformed at this moment because Mary bore Christ to them. Imagine yourself in this moment. Place yourself in the story as Mary, as Elizabeth, as John, or perhaps you are still imagining yourself in Mary’s womb with Jesus. What is unfolding? What are you seeing? Hearing? Feeling? What emotions are resonating in your heart? What gift is God giving you in this moment that will transform your life? How are you being invited to bear Christ to the world?

Baby John Leaped in His Mother’s Womb by Susanna Katherine

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