Saving the Best for Last

Remember those days when you were a bouncing, energizer-bunny kid and you saw (or thought you saw) the shape of your most-wanted Christmas gift under the tree? When you just about rocketed out of your socks from the anticipation? I don’t know about you, but even though I always wanted to unwrap that most-wanted gift first and foremost, I would, counter to all my emotions, save it to open last.

However much I want to eat dessert before the main meal (let’s face it–sometimes I do,) open my longest-anticipated present first, give my most-thoughtful gift from the miniature wealth of my first few months of income right at the start, I wait.

nativityIn my deepest heart of hearts, I think I know that somehow, saving the best for last is most gratifying. Can it be that I secretly like the waiting, the anticipation, the advent of the season?

God, over and over again, has chosen to save the best for last. On the sixth and final day of creation, he created humankind in His image, and finally could proclaim everything He had made very good. Sarah, far from the brightness of youth,when everyone assumed that she was cursed for not bearing a child, conceived a son that would carry the bloodline of Jesus. After years of slavery and bondage, God raised Moses to shine His light to a people who had lost hope. After four hundred years of prophetic silence, when most thought that God had finally given up on them, the greatest miracle in heaven and earth broke the silence with a soft whisper of a baby that would grow into a cry on the cross and a shout from the grave.

Even Jesus’ first miracle mirrored his heart for advent, for a stalwart hope in the unseen.

John 2:9-10 (emphasis mine)–

When the master of ceremonies tasted the water that was now wine, not knowing where it had come from (though, of course, the servants knew), he called the bridegroom over.10 “A host always serves the best wine first,” he said. “Then, when everyone has had a lot to drink, he brings out the less expensive wine. But you have kept the best until now!

God is faithful. His advent, our birthing, groaning, crying waiting, never disappoints. Jesus knows right when He needs to come, to maximize impact, to bring the most hearts to Himself as is possible.

Let’s celebrate God’s faithfulness together this season and every season, because though waiting for the best for last can be frustrating and seem endless, He is coming. He will come again. Look at the baby in the manger and jump forward into the unreachable future to a time when unyielding perfection will finally heal our deepest wounds.

The best is still to come!