Posted by: Titus Presler | November 29, 2011

What’s God Up To?: Meditation for Advent I Tuesday

What’s God Up To?

In Advent we look both backward and forward: back to the coming of God in Jesus at Bethlehem, forward to the further coming of Christ at the consummation of all things.  The two are linked: what God inaugurated in Jesus of Nazareth God is bringing to completion in the Christ of glory.

We live between these comings.  We have a lot to go on from the first coming.  As God incarnate, Jesus was the great sign.  Jesus signified, or signed, that God loved so much that God would not abandon us as we pushed God away.  God loved so much that God bonded with us, entering the human story as one of us.

God was up to something in Jesus.  What Jesus said God was up to was the kingdom of God.  In his living and teaching, Jesus pointed to the reign of God in justice, compassion, reconciliation.  Jesus’ coming and his preaching of God’s reign signified, or signed, that God cherishes human history.  Our story is a prime location for God’s presence and action – not the only location, but a prime location.

God’s up to something now.  What’s God up to?  That’s where signs come in.  “Keep awake!”  “Watch!”  For what?  Signs of the kingdom, signs of what God is up to!  Where?  Right here in the world where God has set up shop!

Expecting, not waiting, is the keynote of this season. We wait in ticket lines and doctors’ offices as we idly thumb the magazines.  But when the pitcher winds up or the interviewer asks the jaw-dropping question – there we’re watching, eager for signs of what will happen next.

What if we were to take the quality of our watching at a sporting event, or at a movie, or in a delicate conversation, and turn that attention on our life direction, or the life of our family, or the life of our community?  And ask, What’s God up to?  Might that be an invitation from God in Advent?

This meditation is excerpted from Titus Presler’s “Alert for Signs: Seeing and Praying in Advent” (Forward Movement Publications).

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