Monday, December 29, 2008


It’s time. Do you remember hearing those words? Maybe you were being prepped for surgery and the nurse had just come in to let you know it was time to go to surgery. Maybe you were in the delivery room at the hospital and the nurse said, “I think it’s time.” Maybe you heard those words when you were at the receiving station and the sergeant came in and said, “It’s time to go.”
It’s time. The time has come or as Paul put it, “the time had fully come.” What’s that mean to you to hear those words, “the time has fully come?”
When I hear those words I realize that I can’t put off any longer whatever I’ve been waiting to do. The time has come for action.
When we get the message that the time has come it is usually something we have written on a particular day on our calendars or it may be something we’ve put in our scheduler to remind us about appointments or commitments. Whatever it is we soon realize it’s time. We can’t put it off any longer.
I don’t know how your lives are governed but I can’t seem to go anywhere without my watch. If I don’t have my watch on my wrist I’m just not comfortable because I don’t know what time it is. Isn’t that silly? What does it matter if I don’t know what time it is? It seems as if we are all governed by time, whether it’s our timepieces or a calendar on the wall. They both show us how quickly time passes and if it’s wasted how we can’t ever get it back.
Some would say it’s very important to know what time it is. It may be very necessary for us to be somewhere at precisely the correct time. If I had stayed in bed until I felt like getting up and then took my time eating breakfast and then arrived here whenever I might or might not be here when people expected worship to begin. I might arrive too early or be too late and that might make some folks unhappy.
Time, it does seems to have a certain power over us. As I have gotten older I realize that time has gone by awfully fast and the time I have left in this world gets shorter with every day. And I wonder if today will be the day that I hear, “It’s time.”
When the time was right for God he sent His Son to us. And when the days were complete…Joseph and Mary offered Jesus to God. Simeon and Anna, when they saw Mary and Joseph come in with their offering of pigeons and Jesus, knew that God was keeping his promise to send the One who would be the world’s salvation and would free the world from its sin. It was time.
What time is it today? Is it time? Has the time come that we’ve been waiting for?
We have been waiting, watching, and preparing for the Messiah. He has come. God has been with us in Jesus and I believe is still with us in the Holy Spirit. Did we notice or have we been too fixated on what time it is?
The promise the Prophet foretold has been fulfilled as Simeon reminds us. The Promise is a light for all nations and glory for Israel. But not everyone believed it at the time and many don’t believe it today.
It is time. Peter’s letter reminded us during Advent that it’s time, time for judgment to begin and we’d better not wait too long to accept Jesus as our Savior. Paul said the same thing in his letter to the Corinthians when he said, “…brothers…the time is short.” Jesus will come again like a thief in the night and none of us knows the time.
It’s time, time to decide what we’re going to do with the lives God has given us. Are we going to believe in this Son he sent into the world or are we not? The time is now and it’s getting shorter.
Friends, Jesus doesn’t push himself on us. He’s patiently waiting for us to answer his call. But first we have to empty ourselves of everything that’s holding us back. Only when we are empty can God fill us up so we can serve Him.
It’s time. The time has come for our decision. Are we ready to make our offering to God and dedicate our lives to his service as Mary and Joseph offered Jesus to God in the temple? Is today the time?
Time is in God’s hands but he has left the timing up to us. Is today your time to make your offering? Friends, it’s time.
Thanks be to God for the gift he gave of himself to the world, Emmanuel, God with us. Amen.

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