Sights and Sounds of Advent | December 18, 2018

December 18, 2018

Libby Boehne, Campus Minister

Isaiah 11:1-9

It’s easy to breeze through the well-known passages in Isaiah, hardly registering what they say because we know them so well and hear them each year. But on this reading, I was struck by the emphasis on the five senses. Isaiah reminds us of the power of our eyes and ears. We are bombarded with countless sounds and sights each day, asked to make judgements about everything from what food to eat to what people to befriend to how to vote. And I, and I would guess many of you, easily make immovable decisions on politics, people, religion and culture. I trust my eyes and ears. But this passage tells us that we worship a God who judges not by first sight or sound but by righteousness and faithfulness. Jesus Christ came to look past the constant images and noises to truly see and to hear the poor and the meek. How comforting that our savior does not make final judgements at first glance but stands beside creation in faithfulness and righteousness. And if Jesus looks beyond initial impressions and judgements, I wonder the ways in which our senses can be more like Christ’s this Advent season? I love the imagery Isaiah uses in verse four: “with the breath of his [Christ’s] lips he shall kill the wicked.” Just as Christ’s breath can kill the wicked, so the breath of the spirit of God fills us. With God’s help, we too can bring hope to the world, seeking righteousness and equity for the poor and meek with just the breath of our lips.

Prayer for the Day:

Eternal God, thank you for standing beside us in faithfulness. Fill our eyes, ears, and lips with your righteousness, that we may be your light in the world. Through the power of Christ’s Holy Spirit, Amen.