Advent

An early blast of arctic air made it seem like Christmas in November. While the trees still bore colored leaves, they were covered with several inches of snow. The holiday season is on us, ready or not.

The church calendar calls this season Advent. Advent is a season of waiting and preparation. On the one hand, we are awaiting the birth of Jesus. We sometimes reflect on the prophets’ passages that anticipate the coming of the Messiah. We join them in their anticipation and yearning for God to show up. On the other hand, Advent is a season of awaiting the second coming of Jesus. We look forward to his return; He will show up again and make all things right.

This year, we will walk through the lectionary passages in our worship each week. The first two weeks of Advent will point us to the Gospel of Mark. On week one, we will consider Jesus’ conversation with his disciples about his second coming. Jesus urges them to be ready. On the second week, we will consider the role of John the Baptist in pointing to Jesus’ identity. John’s message was one of urgency about Jesus showing up. He challenged the world to get ready for Jesus. In the third week, we will contemplate the mind-boggling description of Jesus in John 1. Finally, on week four, we will discuss God’s choosing Mary. The season provides an opportunity for us to practice a posture of preparation as we encounter God.

Finally, we will gather together on Christmas Eve to celebrate the Savior’s birth. The service will be at 7:00 PM at the church. Celebrating communion by candlelight is a wonderful way to begin the holiday.

I am looking forward to walking through this season together. As the world around us focuses on buying the right presents, we have the privilege of reflecting on the greatest gift in history.

(John 1:14 ESV) “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.”