strengthen your body + calm your mind + open your heart + connect with God
In this second of three Advent yoga practices, we explore the heart of Expectation…what’s our response when God answers our prayers, but not in the way we expect?
God putting on skin and bone and coming to earth as baby to save the world, was not exactly what the Israelites had in mind when God promised them a Savior.
The way God moved in the Old Testament is not the way he moves in the New Testament. God spoke through burning bushes, supernatural plagues descending on the Egyptians, parting the Red Sea, conquering opposing armies amidst impossible circumstances…God revealed his unrivaled power, strength, His supreme holiness, might, and victory.
In the 700+ years since Isaiah’s prophesy, life did not get any better for the Israelites. By the time Jesus was born, they were ruled by the Romans, their promised land inhabited by an alien people opposed to their God.
God fulfilled his promise in a shocking way. God was so holy to the Jewish people, that they would not even write His name, the closest Moses ever got to seeing God was seeing His back because the glory of his presence was so overwhelming.
And then God put on skin and bone and that same holy, awesome God, appears on earth, grown in a teenage girl’s womb, birthed into the feeding trough of some cattle. Vulnerable, helpless, human.
It’s almost as though God was saying,
What I’m doing here is so much bigger than conquering an opposing army, winning a victory on the battlefield. I’m coming to save the world – all the world! Jews AND Gentiles, slaves and free, men and women, prostitutes and priests, the hopeless and the hurting – for all eternity, so they don’t have to do it try and do it themselves.
And yet, we get hung up when it doesn’t look like we expected, when it doesn’t happen when we thought it would happen, when it requires more of us than we are willing to give.
What does Advent have to teach us about our expectations of God?
Have we missed what God is doing because it doesn’t look like what we thought OR it requires too much of us?