This morning my sermon was entitled, “Messenger of the Word.” On the third Sunday in Advent, we traditionally recognize the contributions of John the Baptist and celebrate his “preparing the Way” for the Messiah. As part of that, we see his work as God’s messenger to the world about Christ’s coming.

As John is the “voice of one crying in the wilderness” preparing the way directly for Jesus Christ in His earthly ministry, so we, the Church, are the new voice, the Messenger of the Word, presenting the Message of Salvation in Christ to the world. Similarly, we carry the Message as part of ourselves — The Word dwells in us through His Holy Spirit. We are the Christ’s Message to the world.

As Messengers and the example of God’s Message, we have a responsibility to 1) deliver the message, 2) honor the Message-Giver and 3) prepare the world to receive the Message of God’s love. We cannot act ignorantly or selfishly. We are not our own but God’s, called by Him to do His work in this world. Where we might balk at the dangerous duties of a Messenger, we are still called to go forward and face the doubters and skeptics — those who would rather deny Christ and even persecute Him — for the sake of the Message and our obedience to our Lord and King Who sends us.

May your Advent season continue to bless you and encourage you to reach new heights in your reliance on the Triune God.