Advent Alphabet (S)

That day, it will be said: See, this is our God
in whom we hoped for SALVATION;
the Lord is the one in whom we hoped.

Just before this verse from Isaiah 25 we have the evocative imagery of the heavenly banquet. With its ‘fine wines’ and ‘foods rich and juicy’ it is an image of abundance and plenty. Israel will be delivered from the aridity of exile with foods that will rehydrate and quench thirst. God promises to provide not only for physical hunger but also to heal grief: The Lord will wipe away the tears from each cheek…

Salvation then for Isaiah is a radical re-ordering of the world where God’s rule will ensure that Israel is provided for in both body and soul. Israel has hoped and longed for this day. Scripture scholar, Walter Brueggemann, describes Isaiah’s vision of the world as ‘an attentive world where Yahweh’s governance is unparalleled.’ I find this a very helpful understanding of salvation.

As Christmas approaches we find ourselves being attentive to all kinds of small things. They might look like a distraction from the Incarnation. Every small act of kindness, every attention to detail can be an expression of our love, however imperfect they may seem.

In these last days of Advent how is God calling you to be attentive?

Isaiah 25:6-10, Wednesday, Week One)