Romans 13:11-14 (NRSV)
Verse 11Besides this, you know what time it is, how it is now the moment for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we became believers; Verse 12the night is far gone, the day is near. Let us then lay aside the works of darkness and put on the armor of light; Verse 13let us live honorably as in the day, not in reveling and drunkenness, not in debauchery and licentiousness, not in quarreling and jealousy. Verse 14Instead, put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.
This week our readings look ahead to the season of Advent. With the coming busyness of the Advent and Christmas season, it is easy for us to forget every day we are getting closer to the day of salvation. To get ready for this day, Paul calls us to “Put on the Lord Jesus,” which is ultimately a call for us to remember our baptism. This isn’t like putting on a coat when it is cold outside. It is a daily joy. It is remembering you are unconditionally loved for who you are, just as you are. In response to that love, we seek to love and serve our neighbors, sharing the joy and the peace it brings. Because we are a people of active hope, we do not fear the future as we look to the fulfillment of Isaiah’s vision of swords becoming plowshares. For it is nearer to us now than it has ever been.
Gracious God, help us to remember our baptism so we may be empowered to embrace your future and to work towards peace. Amen.