advent | day one.

Today, I began an Advent countdown on my Instagram account dedicated to my yoga practice and engaging in the yoga community. @samj_yoga

One Christmas tradition I love but never had was Advent. I think for those of us on this side of the redemption story, it’s easy to forget that there was a time people waited with anticipation and prepared themselves for Christ’s first arrival. After quite a time of spiritual deadness, I’m grateful for a heart that is finally beating for and eager to celebrate Jesus this year. And I want to share my excitement!

Through this Advent season, I plan to share a new theme each day, with an inspired yoga pose, scripture, and a few thoughts, observations, or a quick note about how this particular verse or idea has changed or impacted my own life. (I promised also to share these thoughts here, on my blog).

I have invited the IG yoga community to celebrate with me by posting a photo each day that goes along with each day’s theme word, and to use the hashtag #samjyogaadvent so we can all follow along with each other. It’s going to be wonderful! I’m really pumped.

So today begins #samjyogaadvent, and we start today with the same theme we will have each Sunday: WAIT.

I mentioned earlier that we have an interesting perspective on God’s redemption plans because we live AD. We already know Jesus came, and even though we are waiting for His final return, He’s already come once. We know grace and forgiveness are ours by faith. People living BC, well, their reality was different. The law had yet to be fulfilled and they were just… waiting.

The Old Testament is full of stories about waiting, and in many cases (like the scripture I chose for today) the word “wait” in the Bible is often translated in some versions as HOPE or TRUST. The way I’ve come to understand it, waiting on the Lord is not like waiting at the doctors office (I mean, it is in the sense that we know at some point, our names ‘will be called’). When we are waiting on the Lord, we are hoping on Him and trusting in Him. And this means we aren’t passive in our waiting, but rather, we are active. Our waiting is productive.

When they were marching around Jericho, they were waiting. When they were praying at Pentecost, they were waiting. But they weren’t idle. They had hope and assurance that God would do as He promised and they trusted He would do it. And it’s when we experience and dedicate our hope and our trust in our waiting to Jesus that we are renewed to keep pushing forward, to keep hoping and trusting and waiting. Which leads me to the scripture I chose for today:

Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:30-31 ESV)

This scripture meant a lot to me early in my faith walk, and I actually have it tattooed on my body so I’ll never forget it.

Each Sunday, we will pause and WAIT. We will reflect on this hope that we have, and trust that our God is doing great things out of His love for us even in our waiting.

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