December 26, 2010

Appreciating Advent - Karen Toews

As a child I grew up with a sure understanding of the meaning of Christmas. Jesus was born to Mary and Joseph in a stable in Bethlehem – a baby who was the Son of God, who would later die and rise again for the salvation of the world. But the significance of the meaning of Advent? Either it didn’t get much press (or pulpit) time or I wasn’t paying attention. The lighting of the advent candle did become part of our Sunday morning service when I was older and for a few years we had a pottery advent candle holder on our dining room table - but it was used more as a centerpiece than a symbol for the Christmas season.

This last month a small group from our church met to study about the hope, joy, peace and love of this season. These weekly gatherings were a personal respite from the busyness of building our house and the mind-work and planning such a project involves. Reading the prophecies and New Testament scriptures leading up to the Christmas story has enlarged my appreciation for the reality of the Advent of the Christ who came to change and save our world. Our church’s Sunday service in this Advent season has also added to the practical application of these truths – by inviting us to to write and submit prayers that related to that weeks’ focus. The act of placing these prayers in the basket at the altar of the church was a tangible expression of my personal hopes, and my desires for the joy and peace and love that only Christ can fulfill.

Christmas Day has come and gone but the Gift of the season remains - and this year for me, a bit richer thanks to a closer look at Advent.

Luke 2: 10, 11 "Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy which shall be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born a Savior, who is Christ the Lord."

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for some ideas to reinforce the appreciation for Christmas. We sorely need them.

    Must remember them for next year.


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