Get ready

What are you doing to prepare for the Christ child? There are so many ways that we can focus on the meaning of Christmas. Take advantage of at least one if not more.

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Put unused items in a box to be delivered to the needy

Read your Bible every day. A good place to start during Advent is with Isaiah or one of the Gospels about the birth of Christ. 

Take time to pray for your needs and the needs of others

Thank God each day for all that he has given you

Befriend someone who is alone

There are many more things to do…but focusing in these last weeks will make Christmas more special

The light is coming

Today we continue to look forward to the birth of Jesus. It comes close to the shortest day of the year and the time when we start back toward more light.The light of Christ is coming into the world.

I don’t think there is any data to tell us exactly the date of Jesus’ birth but this is when we celebrate it and that is fine. A time set aside for us to remember the birth of the baby that changed the world.

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Amazing god, help to remember why we celebrate. AMEN

Follow Jesus

Isaiah has a clear picture of what we wait for during Advent. We wait for Jesus who can show us how to live. His life is our path. Follow it.

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Isaiah 61: 1-3 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

1 The spirit of the Lord God is upon me,
because the Lord has anointed me;
he has sent me to bring good news to the oppressed,
to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and release to the prisoners;
2 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor,
and the day of vengeance of our God;
to comfort all who mourn;
3 to provide for those who mourn in Zion—
to give them a garland instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
the mantle of praise instead of a faint spirit.

The whole thing

Since this is Advent what are we looking forward to….the birth of a baby….not just an ordinary baby but the most amazing gift from God…Himself. He was willing to come to earth and live among us. For me this is amazing. Who would give up heaven? This is as incredible as the resurrection. Some theologians are Resurrection Theologians. They feel that the resurrection is the most important part of Christ’s coming. Some are Incarnational Theologians. They see God coming to earth as the most important. I see it as a whole thing. His coming to earth, his ministry, his death, his resurrection are a whole. In my mind you can’t separate it out. It is indivisible.

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As the year grows older

This is an amazing Advent Hymn that many of us have never heard. There is a link to the singing of this hymn but be sure to read the words which are wonderful!

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Each Winter as the Year Grows Older

By William & Annabeth Gay

Each winter as the year grows older,
We each grow older too.
The chill sets in a little colder;
The verities we knew
Seem shaken and untrue.

When race and class cry out for treason,
When sirens call for war,
They overshout the voice of reason
And scream till we ignore
All we held dear before.

Yet I believe beyond believing,
That life can spring from death:
That growth can flower from our grieving;
That we can catch our breath
And turn transfixed by faith.

So even as the sun is turning
To journey to the north,
The living flame, in secret burning,
Can kindle on the earth
And bring God’s love to birth.

O Child of ecstasy and sorrows,
O Prince of peace and pain,
Brighten today’s world by tomorrow’s,
Renew our lives again;
Lord Jesus, come and reign!

Night Prayer

Tonight I want to share the prayer I shared on my other blog https://worrylessjourney.com/2018/12/09/what-has-been-done-has-been-done/

It is a night prayer from the liturgy “Night Prayer” from the New Zealand Prayer Book. I have long love the prayer and have shared it before but it fits advent perfectly and is worth sharing again. I use it every night before sleep. Peace be with you.

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Lord,
it is night.

The night is for stillness.
Let us be still in the presence of God.

It is night after a long day.
What has been done has been done;
what has not been done has not been done;
let it be.

The night is dark.
Let our fears of the darkness of the world and of our own lives
rest in you.

The night is quiet.
Let the quietness of your peace enfold us,
all dear to us,
and all who have no peace.

The night heralds the dawn.
Let us look expectantly to a new day,
new joys,
new possibilities.

In your name we pray.
Amen.

 

A little bit more!

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Some people have never heard of Advent. They may not be Christian or espouse any God at all but in this season there is a difference in the air. In the time building up to Christmas there is more focus on the needy and homeless. Collections are made for children, food is collected, the Salvation Army and others receive more help. We are more generous and there is a spirit of compassion abounding. It seems that advent calls for generosity and kindness.Whether you celebrate Christmas or Hanakkuh or only the commercial aspects this season changes people The spirit of the holidays is around us and yes, it is something more.

Caring God, help us to carry this spirit into the new year. AMEN

Have a ready heart

Advent brings so much for us to ponder. What is the meaning of Christmas? How can I get ready for Jesus? What does this season mean to me? Can I stop long enough to remember what it is all about?

We have to look toward Christmas with a ready heart.

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Loving God, help us to turn from the busy-ness and dwell on the gift of God. AMEN

The Gift

I often think about the fact that God was willing to leave heaven and come to earth as a man. Who would choose to leave heaven? 





THE GIFT


How wonderful that God
would be willing
to come to earth
as a human


How wonderful that God
would live as man
with other men
in time


How wonderful that God
would be willing
to suffer as men
and die


How wonderful that God
did all of this
for all of us
to live

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Suzanne  Boyd 1996