Saturday, December 1, 2012

advent

For most of my Christian life I was unaware of the beautiful way the story of faith retold itself each year through the church calendar.  How each and every year, through its feasts and celebrations and remembrances, the incredible story of God’s extravagant love for His people is lived out again and anew by the community of faith.  It is an invitation to us all to journey with Christ (and the people of God) into a more intimate and vibrant relationship with the One who made us for Himself.  It is an invitation for each of us to enter in to the story—to live the season in a way that gives us a deeper love for, and a stronger faith in, the God who dreamt us into being.  The beginning of this yearly pilgrimage is the season of Advent. 
 
The word advent comes from the Latin word adventus, which means coming. Thus Advent is a season in which we are invited to watch and wait for God’s arrival among us—making it a time of intense yearning and deep longing.  It is a time filled with hope and anticipation, a time that reflects the 400 years (between the Old and New Testaments) that God’s people waited for Him to appear, to speak once again after all of the years of silence.  Can you imagine?  Four hundred years of silence.  Four hundred years of watching and waiting.    
 
How easy it would have been to lose hope.  How easy it would have been to be filled with doubt and despair.  How easy it would have been to give up, to lose heart, to stop believing that God was ever really going to show up again.  How easy it would have been to say, “My master is taking a long time in coming” and begin living by our own rule and by our own agenda.  Advent is the time where we take heed of the words of Jesus, “Therefore, keep watch because you do not know on what day your Lord will come.”  So during the days and weeks ahead, may we pay very careful attention, lest when he finally arrives, we miss him altogether.

2 comments:

  1. Jim,

    Good to read you.

    Did you make a Watch and Wait for 2012? Reading 2011 right now, but didn't know if there was an updated version I was missing out on.

    Let me know! Happy Advent!

    Luke Sadler
    jlsadler21@gmail.com

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  2. "So during the days and weeks ahead, may we pay very careful attention, lest when he finally arrives, we miss him altogether." Amen!!

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