In the PCUSA and several other denominations, we acknowledge and commemorate Advent, “arrival”, “coming”, and this year we will celebrate Advent from November 27 through December 24, 2022.
This is the time of year is when Protestants, Catholics, Orthodox, and some other Christian traditions commemorate the events leading up to the birth of Jesus Christ. Each Sunday we begin the week with one of four themes—hope, peace, joy, and love. Concentrating upon these themes keeps us focused upon the essence of Advent and Christmas. The “coming or arrival”, and the “birth” of the Messiah are the heart and soul of this Season leading up to Christmas.
The first Sunday of Advent is “HOPE”, for the hope we have in life, death, and eternity is in Jesus Christ, who came to earth in humility and in modesty, and who promised to come again. Our “HOPE” as a people, as those who seek justice and equity, and in eternity is in Jesus Christ. He is our hope for harmony, unity, and fellowship. The first Sunday of Advent, this coming Sunday, November 27, 2022, is HOPE. Hope is the “expectation” or looking forward for something to occur. It is also defined as a feeling of “trust”. There is a hymn that says, “I trust in God, I know God cares for me, on mountains high or on the stormy sea”.
The beauty of Advent is that all we teach as God’s people is realized in Jesus Christ. All we promote in the foundations of Christianity is brought to bear in Jesus Christ. All we live in life and in faith is found in Jesus Christ. Jesus came to earth, just as the prophets of old testified and foretold. He was born, lived, taught, ministered, died, and was raised in the truth of God’s promises. He promised to come again, and it is with this reality that we live and move and minister.
The beauty of Advent is that the truth of Jesus Christ is realized in scripture and in history. It is a reality in our faith. Is it a reality in yours?
“Loving and Merciful God, let us live into the reality of Advent, in which we continue to believe in your birth, life, death, and resurrection. Let us live into the belief in the truth and reality that you will come again, as you promised. Lord, you have always kept your promises. We anticipate your coming among us and commemorate the prophecies and the lives of those who knew you and believed in you. WE believe in you. AMEN.”