On Sunday, we looked at Matthew 3:1-12, in which John proclaims that we must prepare the way and make a straight path for the arrival of the Lord.
It’s easy to hear those words now in a cliched way, without much substance. But if we take them seriously, we are reminded of the task we’ve been called to. John’s followers certainly weren’t expecting a sort of savior like Jesus. Not with the long shadow of the Romans cast over them, not with their way of life threatened by outsiders.
We don’t live in a world that is looking for a savior like Jesus. We imagine salvation in the form of economic prosperity or political stability. It’s our job to help shape the viewpoint of the world so that when Jesus steps onto the scene, he’s able to take center stage.
I mentioned the Pixar film, Ratatouille, in which Anton Ego rediscovers his proper role as a critic. The task of the critic is the “discovery and defense of the new.” He writes, “The new needs friends.” This advent, how will you rise to the defense of this new kingdom that Jesus has established? How will you help others discover the gospel in all its richness?