2014 Advent Devotions – “Doors and Pathways”
Wednesday, December 3rd
“Lift up your heads, O gates! And be lifted up, O ancient doors! That the King of glory may come in. Who is this King of glory? The Lord of hosts, God is the King of glory.”
Psalm 24, 9-10, NRSV
Fling wide the door, unbar the gate; the King of glory comes in state;
The Lord of Lords, the King of Kings, the Savior of the world who brings
His great salvation to the earth.So raise a shout of holy mirth
And praise our Lord and God,Creator, Spirit, Word.
“Fling Wide the Door”, ELW 259
I know many folks in the U.S. are not familiar with the Advent hymn ‘Fling Wide the Door’. However, for me, as for the majority of German Protestants, Advent wouldn’t be complete without it. “Macht Hoch die Tür”, the German version of this hymn, is the hymn which is traditionally sung on the first Sunday in Advent in Germany, and it is so popular that it was moved to be hymn no. 1 in the revised evangelical hymnal from 1995. The melody is reminiscent of a joyful dance – the Savior is coming, so let’s fling all doors wide open and celebrate!
I think there is no better way to start the Advent season and the beginning of a new church year than with this kind of joyful anticipation in our hearts. God is coming! God wants to be close to you! God is knocking – are we ready to open up our lives for God?
As this year’s theme of the ‘Occasional Advent devotions’, I will reflect on the doors, gates, and pathways in our lives. What or who are we trying to shut out? How can we open ourselves to let in God, who comes to us in many ways, but especially in this season as the child in the manger?
If God seems to be missing in our lives, it is mostly because we are so preoccupied with other things that we don’t even realize how God wants to enter in. In this very busy season, may our prayer be:
Come Lord, our Savior, Jesus Christ; Our hearts are open wide in trust.
Oh, show us now your lovely grace, upon our sorrows shine your face,
And let your Holy Spirit guide our journey in your grace so wide.
We praise your holy name, from age to age the same.