Editor's note: "Unmasking Advent: The Arrival of a Savior in Our Lives" is a sampling of biblical meditations composed by members of the Concordia University Ann Arbor and Wisconsin community. It is our prayer that you will take time during the Advent season to read and reflect upon God's Word and await the coming of Jesus with newfound anticipation and zeal through the Holy Spirit.
December 19 – A primer on preparation
Isaiah 40:1-17 and Revelation 7:1-17
One morning, I was awakened from strangers in my apartment, who insisted I go with them. Groggy and confused, I asked where and why? They explained I had suffered a seizure and they’d been called to take me to the ER. Prior to this, I didn’t have any reason to question my health. I was a college athlete, who worked out a minimum of 4 times a week. There wasn’t an intramural sport in which I didn’t participate. And still, I was being taken to the hospital under suspicion of seizure. To say I wasn’t prepared, is certainly an understatement.
After having the tumor removed, I was met by oncologist, who would be in charge of my care as I went through an experimental therapy. As a biological science doctoral student, I was well aware of rules regarding consent, which I hadn’t given. At that moment I knew what must be done. I was flown to UCLA medical center to undergo intensive diagnostics. All of this was unexpected and inconvenient. I wasn’t prepared!
Five days passed, and the time came to receive the prognosis and to learn of the way forward devised by my medical team. I knew I needed to get a grip and to prepare myself for the news. As I sat and talked to God, I asked that His will be done. I could feel the weight of worry being lifted. Now, I was prepared!
Surrounded by the 6-member team, I was informed of their conclusions: I would live many years to have a family and possibly grandkids; there was no tumor in sight; and the therapy would allow me to continue pursuing my career as a neuroscientist.
There was no better way for me to be prepared than praying to God and letting Him lead. So, when the voice said, “Cry”, not only did I cry, but I shouted, “Amen!” (Isaiah 40: 6, paraphrased)
During this Advent, I pray the Holy Spirit will prepare our minds and hearts to receive our Lord and Savior into the world. Then on that day, we can all cry out, “Amen!”
DR. JONATHAN REASOR, is a faculty member in the School of Arts and Sciences on the Ann Arbor campus. He has served at Concordia since 2016.
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