It seems hard to believe that we are at the end of another year already. Actually, the beginning of the church year is not in January, but the First Sunday of Advent, which is November 27. We begin the church year,anticipating the celebration of the coming of Christ at Christmas, and also anticipate the second coming of Christ yet to come. It is a time of expectation, a time of eagerly looking forward to what God’s future will bring.

There is a sense in which the journey we’re called to in Advent is in the opposite direction as the one the world calls us to this time of year. The malls and stores have us celebrating Christmas all during December (actually much earlier than that!), and the world tells us to party hearty. In contrast to that, the church tell us to wait…to reflect…to take stock. The world speeds up, and our faith tells us to slow down. The world pushes us to fill our lives up with activity, and our faith calls us to make space for prayer, for study, for reflection. Christmas is the church’s holiday, but we’re called to prepare for its coming during Advent. Then, once

December 24 arrives, we will pull out all the stops to celebrate the glorious coming of the Christ child.

It’s my prayer that during your Advent journey, you will take time to worship in community with others on Sundays, as well as the special weekly Advent study with Pastor Rebekah on Thursday evenings, as well as every day in your private devotions and family prayer time. Use this time to allow God to get our attention, to take an Advent journey inward. I look forward to seeing you in worship in the coming days.

Walking in Grace,

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