During the season of Advent, I am going to do something new on the blog. I am going to try my best to offer a daily reflection here as we journey through this season together. To help frame the devotions I have been using hashtags designed by a group with the Episcopalian church. For example, the hashtag assigned for today is #Prepare
Some days, I find its easiest to let other’s words speak. Today, I think I’ll let Frans Mikael Franzen’s text of the great hymn “Prepare the Royal Highway” ground our thought on what it means to prepare.
The hymn’s lyrics call:
Prepare the royal highway; the King of kings is near! Let every hill and valley, a level road appear! Then greet the King of glory, foretold in sacred story: Hosanna to the Lord, for he fulfills God’s word!
God’s people, see him coming: your own eternal king! Palm branches strew before him! Spread garments! Shout and sing! God’s promise will not fail you! No more shall doubt assail you! Hosanna to the Lord, for he fulfills God’s word!
Then fling the gates wide open to greet your promised king! Your king, yet every nation its tribute too may bring. All lands will bow before him; their voices join your singing: Hosanna to the Lord, for he fulfills God’s word.
His is no earthly kingdom; it comes from heaven above. His rule is peace and freedom and justice, truth, and love. So let your praise be sounding for kindness so abounding: Hosanna to the Lord, for he fulfills God’s word!
What does it mean for you to prepare? How do you feel at this time of year that you are preparing? Does your preparation include more peace and praise, or haste and stress?
As for me, each day during Advent seems to ebb and flow with the work I am doing. Some days are thankfully fuller of peace and praise. Others much more so haste, stress and worry. It’s in those days that I need even more so to pause and remember lyrics and messages such as this. How about you?
Image Credit: Royal Highway
Source: “Prepare the Royal Highway,” Frans Mikael Franzen, Swedish folk tune, 17th century, Public Domain. Found in Evangelical Lutheran Worship, (Minneapolis, MN: Augsburg Fortress, 2006), Hymn #264.