Sunday, November 24, 2013

Hope, Anticipation, Looking forward

In Sunday School this morning, we talked about Advent.  The church season of Advent starts next Sunday so we spent today discussing what Advent is and what it means.

The lesson was introduced by sharing a little about an article that I had read several weeks ago.  The article was about how we should think about extending Advent a few weeks.  It talked about how we are missing the point of Advent.  The point being to focus on the second coming of Christ as fulfillment of all promised in his first coming, which we celebrate during Christmas.  You can read the article here

Then the question was asked...  What is Advent?  Do you know?  Well we have 2 definitions, the lower case advent which means the coming or arrival, especially of something extremely important and we have the upper case Advent which is the liturgical period preceding Christmas, beginning in the Western churches on the fourth Sunday before Christmas and in Eastern churches in mid-November, and observed by many Christians as a season of prayer and fasting.

Here are a couple of cute videos sharing some thoughts on Advent.

and this one is an ad but just at the very end.

Take a moment to read Isaiah 65:17-25.  Pull out your Bible or if you don't have one nearby you can read it here.  What does this mean to you?  How do you feel about a new heaven and a new earth? 

Isaiah was addressing the people of Israel at a very difficult time.  They were just coming out of exile from Babylon after 60 years of captivity.  They were war torn and weary.  When they got back they found that everything had been destroyed!  Nothing was as they remembered it.  Through Isaiah, God offered a message of Hope.  He gave them something to anticipate, to look forward to, something to hold on to; Hope.

That's where we find ourselves during Advent.  We are in anticipation, looking forward to something wonderful.  Hoping for our future.


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