Advent

Pastoral Reflections

One of my favorite images of Advent is that of pregnancy. No single image can cover the extents of the radical message of Advent, but I think pregnancy gives it a pretty good try.

Advent is its own full season, but one that looks toward another. It is anticipatory. Expectation in action! One of the biggest how-to’s of Advent is the balancing act of leaning fully into the season for all that it shapes in us without making it the Christmas before the CHRISTMAS; and yet do so in real hope of God’s Promise inevitably fulfilled – His climactic visitation to us.

I remember that last year I struggled with decorations coming up in the church before, at least, Advent 3. This year, after hearing the pragmatic reasons, I yielded.

All that aside, let’s not tame Advent. The truth is that we are helpless in our condition. We are tired of trying, burned out from our spiritual failures. Our own selfish ways eat us up and our weak hands cannot cut salvation out of the woods of God’s righteousness. We are a people with eyes lifted in despair to the hills, “From whence will our help come?” (Ps. 121:1)

As we come there this year – in worship, prayers, daily living and heart posture, let us sit with Advent a little bit. Let us stay on that first verse of Psalm 121 some more. Then can our voices rise in celebration when He brings us to that divinely acted response of the second verse, “Our help comes from the very Lord Himself.”

Advent calls us to put our pens down from the lofty individual stories we sought to write and turn our eyes to God’s unfolding grand story. Yes, this pregnant season will see a birth. A birth like none other. __________________________________________________________________________________________
Donald Nwankwo
The Light of Christ Anglican Church
4000 W. Yale Ave.
Denver, CO 80219