WELCOME TO ADVENT -
A LETTER FROM REV. PENNY NELSON
Dear Siblings in Christ,
This Sunday, we enter into the 4-week season of the church year known as Advent. Although Advent these days is most often associated with the little chocolate-filled calendars counting down the days ‘til Christmas, there is a whole lot more to this season than chocolate! At its core, Advent is about preparation—about preparing for the light of Christ to be born once again in this world, and for the love of Christ to be born once again in us. Just like we might prepare for the birth of a beloved child by reading books, painting a nursery room, going for check-ups at the doctor’s or making or buying clothes and a cradle, we take intentional time during these four weeks to prepare ourselves for all the changes that will take place when Christ is born again in this world and in our hearts on Christmas day.
So, this Advent, I invite you to deeply consider how you are preparing for Christ’s birth in your own life, and the life of this world. Maybe some of those preparations are about putting up lights or buying presents to give joy to those around you, and that’s wonderful! But you might also prepare for Christ’s birth by taking time to pray each day, or to reflect weekly on how the Advent themes of Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love are mirrored in your life and how they might help you prepare to welcome Christ again into your life. Perhaps you take the time to listen for what God has been preparing your heart for over the past year—is God calling you to take new steps of beginnings or endings in your life, and how might you live into that?
As we enter into this first week of Advent, I encourage you to read our first scripture reading for our worship this week from Isaiah 2:1-5, and ponder the questions:
What is Hope? How does hope prepare you for certain situations in your life?
How might this vision of God’s kingdom shape your hope, prayers, and values?
May the light of Hope burn brightly for you this week, my siblings.
Rev. Penny Nelson