Advent 2012 - Week two. Peace within ourselves. Peace with one another. Peace in our communities and nation. Peace in the world.
Here's a thought from our friend (and pastor) regarding this season.
Advent – A time for Presence, Intention, and Sharing
by Tim Keel
I love this time of year. It is the season of Advent! It is a time when routines change, music changes, when people begin having parties – all in anticipation of Christmas. In proclaiming my love I might also be in the minority. Many people do not love this time of the year. They hope merely to survive. It’s easy to understand why. Christmas can be incredibly stressful and difficult for so many reasons.
Even so, it is a significant time of the year. Amidst all that swirls around us, there is a sense that something is different. I believe this is because Christmas isn’t a mere holiday. It is a holy day. There is a deep and true Center to our celebration that is rooted in the revelation of God. At Christmas, we proclaim that the Creator of the cosmos has made himself known by coming to us as a child, Jesus Christ. At long last, God is fulfilling his promise to come and dwell among his people once more, to bring healing and renewal to creation. Immanuel.
In coming to his people as a child, God reveals something about his nature and character that we often overlook. We learn that God’s nature is manifested not by independence and demonstrations of power, but through vulnerability and relationships. The good news is that the God of the universe comes to us as a person.
Anticipating that, we prepare to receive and worship that person – Jesus Christ – during Advent. Advent marks the beginning of the new year for the church. In the same way that our culture begins a new year with fresh resolutions, I want to invite Jacob’s Well to be thoughtful about how we prepare for Christmas this year – that our celebration of the arrival of God in Jesus Christ would reflect the Person whose birth we celebrate. And not just that, but that our actions during this season would reveal the Creator who has come to bring healing and renewal to his world.
To do that, I am challenging us this Advent to be present, to be intentional, and to share.