• Pastor Dave Prill

Prepare to meet

The boys and I have very different ways of welcoming people.

The boys? Follow this timeline:

About 2 hours before guests arrive the boys start asking “when are Lewis and Clark (names changed to protect the identity of the innocent) coming over.” They walk around the house busily dreaming about all the fun they will have with Lewis and Clark. They excitedly list all the greatest things about Lewis Clark. They relive the memories we have shared.

About 30 minutes before the “earliest possible arrival” they begin to hang out by the front door. Looking. Catching their breath at every car that passes.

15 minutes before? They jump on their scooters and ride up and down the streets in anticipation of arrival.

Arrival? They yell and scream in excitement as soon as they see the car.

Me? Follow this timeline:

About 2 hours before guests arrive, I am in a rush. Wrap up this “really important thing” from work. Then I walk around the house and busily pick up every single toy that I can find. I’m trying to clean the toilets (#boys!). I’m checking in with Christa.

About 30 minutes before the “earliest possible arrival” my legs are beginning to hurt and grow weary. I’m frustrated that the boys aren’t helping. And I’m hoping that our guests are late.

At “arrival time,” I’m thankful that the guests are late. I’ve got just a few precious moments to rest my legs (#hopefully) or (more likely) get one more corner of the house cleaned.

Notice the difference?

The boys are just excited for the time.

I’m trying to please and prepare.

The boys know they are loved unconditionally.

I’m trying let our guests know they are loved.

Consider this question: “O, Lord, how should I meet you? How can I welcome you aright?”

It’s the opening line to an old song and the question just has me thinking: How am I getting ready? How am I preparing to meet Jesus? Technically we have a lot of “meetings” to prepare for. We prepare to meet Jesus on Christmas day. We prepare to meet Jesus when He returns. We prepare to meet Jesus every day.

How should I meet you, Lord Jesus?

Think about the two examples. Neither are bad. Both are good. Both have their place. As I prepare to meet Jesus, I want to be doing things that please him. I want to remove sin from my life. I want to look more and more like him. I want to “clean my house.” I want him to know that I am trying my best to obey. That I love him. I really do love him.

But I also want too just be flat out excited. Excited to see what Jesus will do today as we meet. Excited to recall all the past miraculous, fun times. Excited to enjoy time with my friend. I know I am loved by Jesus. Unconditionally loved by Him. There is no mess and no mistake that would stop him from loving me. So, I want to just have some scooter riding, exclamatory joy as I prepare to meet him.

I’m guessing that a few of you need to prepare like I prepare for guests. Clean up. Set up. Hope for more time. I am guessing even more of us need to prepare like the boys prepare for guests. Look out (for him and where he is at work). Look back (at the marvelous things he has done). Look forward (to what he will do in future). Prepare to meet him - with joy.

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