Monday, December 1, 2008

happy advent

Advent started yesterday. Most of you probably didn't know that. To be honest I never did before this year either.

What's different about this year? Well, I'm glad you asked. I think it's important for us as believers to connect with THE CHURCH... that means God's people globally and across time. I love to stay connected with the ancient Church as well as the Church in other cultures. I think this is healthy and can keep us from a lot of error. So, a few months ago I started using a book based on ancient practices... The Daily Prayer Book. I follow it every day. It follows the "Christian Calendar" and the Christian calendar BEGINS with Advent. So, happy new year (I guess) everybody!

So, now we're in the season of Advent. What in the world is Advent? Again, glad you asked. It represents the beginning of our spiritual journey. During this month we can share in the anticipation of Israel & the longing shared by Abraham, Moses, David, etc... THE COMING OF THE MESSIAH.
For believers, Advent represents the Messiah coming at Bethlehem, but also Jesus coming at the end of the age! During Advent we look ahead to Christ to come and establish His kingdom... we long for it just like the ancient people of God. We share in their longing as the people of God together. As Advent leads up to Christmas we will be especially aware of how HUGE it was for Jesus to enter our world on Christmas.
I think by following this ancient prayer book this Christmas will be more meaningful than ever for me. I'll be experiencing Advent which goes until December 24th.

THEN Christmas starts on December 25th. Starts on December 25th? Yeah... there are 12 days of Christmas in the Christian calendar. Now you know where the song came from! 
BUT, Christmas is so much more than that! It represents the culmination/CELEBRATION of our Advent longing. All the anticipation comes to an end in Jesus coming to earth to be the Savior... the RESCUER... the REMEDY.

Unfortunately, Advent for most of us American Christians consists of spending a bunch of money on crap. And then the Christmas season... the 12 days that should be us celebrating the coming of our Messiah are consumed with EATING & hanging out with family you probably don't ever see or maybe even like! And then WORRYING about how you're going to pay for all this crap you bought & can you even return all the crap people bought for you for cash or do you have to take store credit to just trade it for more crap YOU DON'T NEED!!! sound about right?

So, I wish you all a happy Advent. Let this season be one of anticipation of a Savior who came, died, and is coming to be the KING. This Advent/Christmas worship Him fully. & Spend Less on that crap you buy everyone so you can GIVE MORE to people who really need stuff like clean water to stay alive!!! Love All like Jesus.

Enter the Story... read about joining the Advent Conspiracy on my post a few days ago HERE.

And watch this video... do something different this Advent... Change someone's life... CHANGE THE WORLD!

much more to come about this whole conspiracy in the days ahead.

1 comment:

dubbe said...

great post Patrick! these are some interesting things to think about. you know, as a kid we always lit Advents candles in our school in Germany, but I had no idea what Advent was all about. I just thought it was the 4 Sundays before Christmas.