By the time Christmas Eve arrived at our house, my brother, 3 sisters and I were almost breathless with anticipation. After weeks of songs, cutting out decorations, Santa visits and trips to the local toy store, our imaginations roared with excitement. So it was no wonder that when we went to bed the night before Christmas sleigh bells rang in our ears. Reindeers’ hooves danced on the roof. Scoffers could not have convinced us that Santa Claus had not arrived at our house.
Our anticipation for Santa was fuelled by the preparations my family made for Christmas. We all learned in time that Santa wasn’t a real person. But there is a real person whose coming I anticipate – Jesus.
We sing about His coming. And talk about it with other believers. I try to imagine His return. No sleigh bells for our Lord. A loud blast on a trumpet will announce His arrival. The Bible says every person on earth will see Him when He comes. Jesus’ followers will escape the bounds of gravity, rise from the earth and meet Him in the air.
When I think about His return, anticipation grows in my heart. I expect to be surprised by how events unfold. Like the scribes and priests who studied the prophets, waited for the Messiah and yet missed the signals of His birth, I expect my vision of His return won’t match the facts. I may misunderstand many of the details but that doesn’t mean I’ll miss the event.
The longer I wait for Him the more my heart longs for Him. The last prayer of the Bible is also mine – “Come Lord Jesus.” (Revelation 22:20)
Santa Claus was part of my childhood. Jesus Christ envelopes my whole life. He is my forever.