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let-every-heart-prepare-him-roomHere we are! Sunday, November 29th is the first Sunday of Advent, the time when we prepare our hearts for the Christ child.  I’d love for us to help each other not miss Him in all the hustle and bustle this Christmas — to help each other find time to ponder Him, like Mary did. If only ten minutes at the start or close of your day to ponder — that would be so good.

I’ll ask a few questions to help you — and suggest that you reflect on a song — and try to keep my blog posts fairly fresh. Your reflections would be so welcome. And I’ll pipe in! May we have a chorus of praise and thoughtful reflections all during Advent, my thoughtful brethren!

Let’s begin with a carol that is actually a song of the Second Coming of Christ  instead of the first, though we always sing it at Christmas.  Sing (and memorize, if you are led)  Joy to the World and reflect on how it is actually a song of the Second Coming. Here are the lyrics — sing it this weekend, reflect, and tell me what you see.

And tell me how you plan to prepare Him room this Advent — for often, if we don’t plan, we will miss Him!

Joy to the World , the Lord is come!
Let earth receive her King;
Let every heart prepare Him room,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven, and Heaven, and nature sing.Joy to the World, the Savior reigns!
Let men their songs employ;
While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat, repeat, the sounding joy.

No more let sins and sorrows grow,
Nor thorns infest the ground;
He comes to make His blessings flow
Far as the curse is found,
Far as the curse is found,
Far as, far as, the curse is found.

He rules the world with truth and grace,
And makes the nations prove
The glories of His righteousness,
And wonders of His love,
And wonders of His love,
And wonders, wonders, of His love.

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  1. I’ve sung this song hundreds of time, but reading it again, I was struck by the phrase “Let every heart prepare Him room.”

    I personalized it to ask myself “How is my heart going to make room for Him this season?”

    I’ve given myself 48 hours to think about this since I read your blog entry.

    I realized that my heart is crowded, not with bad things, but still very crowded.

    It seemed to me that He was saying to me to clear out some of the crowdedness – simplify my heart – give more expansiveness to it so that there is more room for His presence.

    Make my heart simpler. Make it clearer and cleaner. Make it less cluttered with ‘things’ and ‘stuff’ and ‘to do’, and give Him plenty of breathing-space.

    Yes, that’s what I sensed Him saying to me.
    So I’ve asked Him how to go about this.
    He’s given me a few ideas.

    Here are some I will do in December:
    • I will attend a Centering Prayer group twice a week.
    • I will spend a portion of my daily time with Him reading the Bible in a Lectio Divina way.
    • I will go on one weekend retreat to a place that offers solitude.
    • I will spend at least one half day each week in silence. Not speaking at all if I can help it. Not a word. Just silent.
    • I will exercise 3x/week or more, knowing that moving my body strenuously clears out so much jumble in my mind and calms my spirit too.

    Sounds like a bunch of New Years resolutions, doesn’t it? But I can feel that ‘pull’.. that call… that I’ve learned to recognize as the Lord.

    It seems to be saying, “Come away, my beloved… Come…”

    Getting away.. getting quiet… getting focused… getting relaxed… being still and silent with Him.

    I think that’s how He’s drawing me to make room in my heart for Him this season.

  2. Let every heart prepare him room stuck out to me more than ever too. I really like what Alexadra said, especially about Lectio Divina. I have found myself to busy (or crowded) lately and not at all with bad things, but I fear this business is something of a cop out. I have become concerned that I am avoiding Him. I was reading a sermon by C.S. Lewis last night entitled A Slip of the Tongue in which he accidentally prayed that he would “pass through things eternal that I finally lost not the things temporal.” Of coarse he meant it the other way around but his point was that it brought to his attention that this actually might be how he felt. Even when we put out prayer time in how often to I really listen to Him and not rush through before he can tell me what He really wants so I won’t be inconvenienced the rest of my day…

    “For it is not so much of our time and so much of our attention that God demands; it is not even all our time and all our attention; it is ourselves.” (Lewis)

    I have been thinking about how He is a Jealous God. How often do I (like the Corinthians in ch. 11) entertain other gospels so to speak and not His. I seem to make room for everything and everyone else first. I have been trying to understand why and I think one reason is that I doubt His love for me. I believe he loves you and the people around me personally, but me? Yes, me.

    Lewis went on,

    “For He has, in the last resort, nothing to give us but Himself; and He can give that only insofar as our self-affirming will retires and makes room for HIM in our souls.”

    I feel in is soo crucial to spend time with Him in prayer and communion, it must be because it is the hardest thing I find to do, to make room. I wonder if anyone else feels so exposed as I do. I wonder if that is why I avoid Him, because he will actually have to do some clearing, some cleaning up inside. Oh, that He may! Thank you for your prompt Dee, there is no one else worthier to make room for.