The Advent prayer for Wednesday, December 14, 2002, comes to us from: Hark the Herald Angels Sing: Daily Prayers for Advent by Stephenie Hovland
8 Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor.
Matthew 4:8 NRSV
Our cited verse comes from the temptation of Jesus. In the cited verse, the devil takes Jesus to the highest mountain to tempt him with all the kingdoms – wealth, influence, power, and notoriety – of the world. Jesus responds in verse 10: “10 Jesus said to him, "Away with you, Satan! for it is written, "Worship the Lord your God, and serve only him.'” The devil attempts to deceive Jesus, hoping he would forget that he already had more influence and power than the devil could offer. Jesus’ response demonstrates not only a knowledge of scripture, but also a comprehension of its meaning.
Temptation affects us all. What might be tempting for one person, may not be tempting to another. What has been something that consistently tempts you? For some, we are tempted to lose our temper. For others, the temptation is to buy things they cannot afford. Similarly, to the devil’s temptation of Jesus, our temptations seek to deceive us into wanting something that God has told us we do not need or cannot manage. May we continue to grow in our faith, recognizing that God knows what we need and when we need it.
Advent Prayer – Day 18
Lord, we often want more than what we have. We may want to ss the world, have more money, or just do more with our lives. Help us examine our motives. If we want more than our current situation, does the motivation come from you, Lord, or from self-interest and self-glory? Help us discern our hopes and dreams and be content with our current situations. Amen.