Advent is here. This is a season of hope and expectation. A season of looking forward to the coming of Christ. A season of joy and love. A season of waiting for and having faith.
You are most likely aware that the term advent means arrival, appearance, or coming of an event or person. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary designates that it is:
a: the coming of Christ at the Incarnation
b: The SECOND COMING
So, this then is the coming of Jesus at His birth. And it is the coming of Christ in the clouds at his return.
The birth story is well known not only to Christians, but to people around the world. There are a host of traditions that surround the celebration of Christmas and the expectation of the coming of the Lord.
Some of these things will be harder this year. Having parties for work and friends through advent is not possible. Singing Christmas Carols in the sanctuary during worship is not permittable at least until the 14th of December. Sharing baked goodies and special candies with others is discouraged. Traveling over the holidays is said to be risky.
Still, there are many things we can do. Of course during Advent it is traditional to spend more time in prayer and fasting. It is traditional to have advent calendars and advent wreaths showing the time passing until Christmas. It is customary to send cards and letters wishing others a Merry Christmas. It is typical for homes to have Christmas Lights displayed and Christmas trees adorned.
However through the do's and don'ts of advent this year there is one things that is always possible and always a priority at every season of the year. We will and do praise God and rejoice in the coming of the Savior of the world born on Christmas morn. We celebrate the faithfulness of the nativity and the obedience and service of Mary and her husband Joseph. We await and look forward to the coming of Christ again. We are positive that eventually the return of Christ will occur and the eternal reign of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords will transpire.
Moody Bible Institute tells us:
"We believe in the second coming of Christ. His return from heaven will be personal, visible and glorious, a blessed hope for which we should constantly watch and pray."
So, I trust you will have a meaningful and holy advent; giving of your love to God and others; and receiving the love of God and the expressions of love from others during this blessed advent season.