Thursday, December 14, 2006

Prepare… Just Avoid the Christmas Rush

Lord Jesus,
Master of both the light and the darkness,
send your Holy Spirit upon our preparations for Christmas.
We who have so much to do seek quiet spaces to hear your voice each day.
We who are anxious over many things look forward to your coming among us.
We who are blessed in so many ways long for the complete joy of your kingdom.
We whose hearts are heavy seek the joy of your presence.
We are your people, walking in darkness, yet seeking the light.
To you we say, "Come Lord Jesus!"

- Henri Nouwen

It is easier said than done to avoid the Christmas rush. Christmas parties, buying presents, preparing meals, fighting crowds – it can become a challenge instead of a celebration.

I would challenge us to use the above prayer to find some centering every day during Advent: to find some quiet amidst the loudness, to find some peace amidst the fray, and to find some joy amidst busy days and lives. Play some Christmas music. Instead of giving a gift in a box, take some time to take an old friend to lunch, or call a high school classmate on the phone.

In the midst of the darkness, the Light of Christ seeks to shine. Come, Lord Jesus!



Thursday, December 07, 2006

Preparing the Way of the Lord

Just a short note to remind us all of the church schedule for the next few weeks, as well as ways we can prepare the way of the Lord:

December 10th – Regular morning worship services. Baptism of Dalton Warriner at 10:45.
December 17th – Choir Cantata. One worship service at 10:45 AM.
December 24th – One morning worship service at 10:45 AM.
Christmas Eve Candlelight at 11:00 PM.
December 31st – Regular morning worship services.

Evening worship services will be held at 6:30 PM on December 10th and December 17th only, and then will resume regularly on January 7th, 2007.

One of the best ways to maintain a Christmas center (as well as a Christian center) during this season is to read the Upper Room devotionals. For those of you who are on your computer much of the day, consider setting your home page on your web browser to the Upper Room devotional for the day (the same as in the devotional book) here. That way, it pops up first thing when you open your browser, and if you click on the suggested scripture reading, it pops up in another window. No excuses!

The crowd answered him, "We have heard from the law that the Messiah remains forever. How can you say that the Son of Man must be lifted up? Who is this Son of Man?" Jesus said to them, "The light is with you for a little longer. Walk while you have the light, so that the darkness may not overtake you. If you walk in the darkness, you do not know where you are going. While you have the light, believe in the light, so that you may become children of light." After Jesus had said this, he departed and hid from them. - John 12:34-36

Let us believe in the light… and become children of light. Prepare the way of the Lord!