Advent Devotional: Welcome Back

Scripture: John 20:31 NLT

But these are written so that you may continue to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing in Him you will have life by the power of His name (John 20:31 NLT).

A thousand springs feed the Davidson River as it wanders through Pisgah National Forest in North Carolina. Fly casters whip lures, angling for lunkers in her pristine waters every summer.

I was a young teen when mother finally gave in and dropped me at the ranger station while she ran errands. Soon I was casting a Mepps spinner up stream, letting it drift with the current until I could crank it through still pockets where trout love to hunt.

Time stalled as the river absorbed my full attention, so I didn’t hear my signal: mom’s blaring horn. Finally, I followed a narrow creek and climbed to the road, proud of my heavy stringer.

Shortly, I spied mom round the curve, where she had turned into a pull off.
“Where have you been? Didn’t you hear me blowing the horn?” She didn’t have to say, “I was worried about you.” Then she took me in her arms for a quick hug. Evidently mom was so filled with joy at my safe return she lost the impulse to browbeat me for my poor judgment and inattention.

A thousand life experiences set us up for Advent. Wade happily into that river of witness and you can’t miss the Messiah’s presence. God does not worry about us, but patiently the Christ calls our name, and then opens His arms, always filled with joy at our return.

Ed Bryson is Adult Bible Fellowship director at WFMC and Hayden’s “Papa.” He collects colorful idioms.