The season of Advent is a period of 4 weeks leading up to Christmas that is characterized by expectant waiting and preparing to celebrate the birth of Jesus.
Why focus on waiting?
Why wait for the gift that has already come?
Why wait to meet the guest already here?
Why wait for the child already born?
In the wait we see the beauty of the gift.
In the wait we encounter the true presence of the guest.
In the memory of the wait we know the child who loves us.
We celebrate Advent because cynicism is the new religion of our world. Whatever it is, this religion teaches that it isn’t as good as it seems. It will let you down. It will betray you. That institution? That church? That politician? That authority figure? They’ll all let you down. Whatever you do, don’t get your hopes up. Whatever you think it is, whatever it appears to be, it will burn you, just give it time.
Advent confronts this corrosion of the heart with the insistence that God has not abandoned the world, hope is real and something is coming. Advent charges into the temple of cynicism with a whip of hope, overturning the tables of despair, driving out the priests of that jaded cult, announcing there’s a new day and it’s not like the one that came before it.
“The not yet will be worth it,” Advent whispers in the dark.
And so each December, we enter into a season of waiting, expecting, longing. Spirit meets us in the ache. We ask God to enter into the deepest places of cynicism, bitterness and hardness where we have stopped believing that tomorrow can be better than today.
We open up. We soften up. We turn our hearts in the direction of that day. That day when the baby cries His first cry and we, surrounded by shepherds and angels and everybody in between, celebrate that sound in time that brings our Spirits what we’ve been longing for.
We will spend four Sundays in our 2013 Advent series on the implications of the Incarnation and then we will come together for a night of song and a candlelight service on Christmas Eve at 6pm.
December 1: Artisan
December 8: Baptism (a special baptism & dedication service)
December 15: Intimacy
December 22: Be (incarnation)
December 24: Christmas Eve Candlelight Service at 6pm