Posted on Nov 29, 2017 by Heather Lewis
I grew up with chocolate Advent calendars. My 2 brothers and I took turns every day in December opening paper windows to find and eat chocolate. Oh, the anticipation every 3 days! We also always had an Advent wreath with 4 red candles (a German tradition – like the Advent calendars) which we lit every evening at dinner in December, and took turns snuffing out the candles with Mom’s fancy silver snuffer. I love the idea of expectation for something wonderful, and Advent is filled with it, in church and in life.
On the surface, I do not love other messages of Advent: especially the idea of waiting, or keeping awake for something that is coming at a time you don’t know. If there’s ever a time I know I’ll have to wait, I bring something with me to do. And when I can no longer be productive, I go to bed – always much later than everyone in my family.
But if I change those messages to “waiting in anticipation” and “keeping eyes open for signs of Christ in the world,” that motivates me to jump into Advent! We as Christians believe that Christ is coming again, and as we await His return we look back and celebrate His first coming as a baby. How fun for us to be in the know, as we recount the surprise of the world when the King was born in a barn, with angels singing to shepherds in a field for his birth announcement!
Digging deeper, I do believe the advice to keep awake is one of the most important directions given to us in the Word. Don’t sleep through life, keeping to yourself instead of opening your eyes to what’s happening around you! Connect with people as you go through your daily life, and you will see Christ in them. Care about others, help those who can’t return the favor, and people will see Christ in you.
May this Advent season be filled with the joy of anticipation, with eyes open to the opportunities to bring Christ’s Light into the world.
Director or Worship and Music