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Advent to Christmas

advent candlesAt Children’s Time in our services, the children have been learning about the candles on the Advent Wreath, and how they symbolize Hope, Love, Joy, Peace, and Christ. And though some may arrange them differently, they all center on Christ.

The children may hope that Santa brings the toys they’ve been wishing for; while those in first century Judea hoped to one day live their lives out from under oppression; and we may hope to live our lives as disciples.

The children may talk of loving their mothers and daddies, sisters and brothers; people in the time of Jesus may wonder about the love of God while living under the rule of others; and we may talk of loving family and friends, neighbors and enemies.

The children may know the joy of “being nice” enough to deserve their presents; while Mary, the shepherds, and Simeon all received great joy with the news of the Messiah child; and we all share in this joy when we realize once again, the miracle of incarnation.

 

The children may have heard that peace is the end of war, and hopefully they still think of peace as a carefree day in the warm sunshine; while the residents of Nazareth and Bethlehem dreamed of real peace from the cruel tyranny of the Roman Empire; and we . . . we do not approve of war or tyranny or even understand why they have to be, so yes, we pray for the peace of this world, as well as the peace that transcends, goes beyond, and surpasses all understanding.

The children may know “Christ” as the last name of Jesus, that sometimes when we pray, we pray to Jesus and sometimes to Jesus Christ. The people in ancient time had known of a coming Christ or Messiah for centuries, and now through the nativity story they learn He is with us. And we once again sing praises to our Christ, our anointed one, our presents and presence of Hope, Love, Joy, and Peace.

Love y’all,
Feliz Navidad y Prospero Año Nuevo,

Pastor John

 

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