When we began planning Advent 2022, our team turned to the lyrics of the hymn “Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus.” The line, “joy of ev’ry longing heart” connected with us deeply. We thought about all the longing hearts across the world and through time, and about every man, woman, and child who will read Scripture with us this Advent season. Every one of us, without exception, knows what it means to long for someone or something. But like snow at Christmastime, the earthly things we long for eventually fade away, fail to satisfy, or possibly never come to fruition at all. That’s because the deep-rooted longing of every human heart can only be satisfied by the God who created us and came to us. He is the One we’re longing for.
Advent is a season for preparing our hearts to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. Alongside the women and men of the Old Testament who looked forward to the promised Messiah, and those in the early Church who lived on alert for His promised return, we look to the only One who will never change, never fail us, never fade away.
We encourage you, in this season marked by longing for material things, to begin your Advent journey by examining exactly what it is you’re longing for. Ask yourself what your heart truly desires. And as you journey with us through the lyrics of this old hymn and the ancient, timeless words of Scripture, ask the God who came to dwell with us to align your longings with His and satisfy your heart in Him.
This reading plan was made with you in mind, and our team has prayed for you all along the way as we curated it. May you anticipate and be satisfied by the God who came to us as a baby and will one day return in glory—Jesus, the joy of every longing heart.