It’s the Sunday after Thanksgiving. If they were not already doing so, Christmas preparations are beginning for many. In fact, I find myself lamenting most years that it starts earlier and earlier each year. As Christians, however, we should not be so quick to jump straight to Christmas. The new liturgical year is just beginning and it starts with Advent.
About a week ago, I read these words in an article on christianity.com that resonated with me:
“While Advent is certainly a time of celebration and anticipation of Christ’s birth, it is more than that. It is only in the shadow of Advent that the miracle of Christmas can be fully understood and appreciated, and it is only in the light of Christmas that the Christian life makes any sense. It is between the fulfilled promise of Christ’s first coming and the yet-to-be-fulfilled promise of his second coming that Karl Barth penned these words: “Unfulfilled and fulfilled promise are related to each other, as are dawn and sunrise. Both promise and in fact the same promise. If anywhere at all, then it is precisely in the light of the coming of Christ that faith has become Advent faith, the expectation of future revelation. But faith knows for whom and for what it is waiting. It is fulfilled faith because it lays hold on the fulfilled promise.” The promise for Israel and the promise for the church is Jesus Christ; he has come, and he will come again. This is the essence of Advent.”
Let’s not be in such a rush for Christmas, that we miss out on the season of Advent. Let’s slow down and take time to wait and listen to what God has for us during this season. Let’s slow down and experience the hope, peace, joy, and love that we celebrate during this season leading up to our celebration of Christ’s birth.
Expectantly waiting together,