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Monday, November 26, 2018

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"The Days Are Surely Coming"

Our twin 3-year-old granddaughters and I often tease one another about what's "my favorite." No, it's my favorite -- whether it is a color or an ice cream flavor -- whatever: "My favorite." "No, mine."

Advent is "my favorite" season of the church year. The emphasis on expectancy -- on watching and waiting -- helps to build my energy as the darkness increases. This year is especially important for me. Recently retired, I am struggling to make sense of my next step(s). I am also on hurry-up mode -- always looking for the shortest lane at the grocery store -- and yes, a yellow light for me does not mean slow down, but rather speed up.

I need Advent, desperately, to slow down, to catch my breath, and to watch and wait patiently. Jeremiah's words ring true: "The days are surely coming." A new shoot will emerge -- new life is God's promise even in the midst of exile. God remains faithful in the most discouraging times. The righteous branch offers the promise and hope of God's justice. We receive these words as good news, hopeful news, as we enter this season of Advent (my favorite!).

Righteous God, prepare our hearts and minds for your involvement in our world as we draw hope from the promise that "the days are surely coming." In your name we pray. Amen.

Paul A. Herpich, '08
Retired, Liverpool, N.Y.

Jeremiah 33:14-16 (NRSV)

14 The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will fulfill the promise I made to the house of Israel and the house of Judah.
15 In those days and at that time I will cause a righteous Branch to spring up for David; and he shall execute justice and righteousness in the land.
16 In those days Judah will be saved and Jerusalem will live in safety. And this is the name by which it will be called: "The Lord is our righteousness."

This God Pause daily devotion is brought to you by the alumni of Luther Seminary.