Letter To Our Children
by Pastor Joe | November 30, 2022 | Letters To Our Children
November 30, 2022
Do you feel the world is broken? (We do)
Do you feel the shadows deepen? (We do)
But do you know that all the dark won’t stop the light from getting through? (We do)
Do you wish that you could see it all made new? (We do)
Is He Worthy—Verse One
But when the set time had fully come, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law…
Advent is a meaningful word to Christians that you won’t find in the Bible. Advent comes from the Latin adventus, which means arrival or coming. And for a very long time, probably since the fourth century, many Christian churches have walked through the paces of Advent Sunday by Sunday rehearsing the events which led to the birth of our Savior, King, and Friend, the Lord Jesus Christ.
Advent Sets Our Minds on Christ
There are, I think, some great Christmas movies meant for our enjoyment. They take us to mythical places, characters, and journeys, setting our minds on them. Advent is a season that sets our minds on Christ.
In the context of the church tradition, Advent begins on the fourth Sunday before Christmas. During Advent:
We read the Scriptures, retelling the historical events of the coming of Christ.
We light candles that bring our attention to Christ, the light of the world.
Often different individuals, families, and couples from the Church will read the Christmas story during a Sunday morning worship service. A simple visual reminder of how Christ, in His love, saves all kinds of people from all their sins.
That may be one of the better lessons of Advent. We are so sinful that our only hope in life and death depends on a rescue mission from God. The coming of Christ to the earth is where they see that rescue mission begin. When we hold to this truth, Advent comes alive in us. As Dietrich Bonhoeffer said in a Christmas sermon,
“The celebration of Advent is possible only to those who are troubled in soul, who know themselves to be poor and imperfect, and who look forward to something greater to come. For these, it is enough to wait in humility and (reverence) until the Holy One Himself comes down to us, God in the child in the manger. God comes. The Lord Jesus comes. Christmas comes. Christians rejoice!”
Advent Reminds Us We Wait
You see, in all that we do together as a church for Advent, we rehearse the promise God gave of a Savior who would set everything right which had gone so wrong in this world, which, thank God, includes us. We rehearse Jesus was born. Jesus died. Jesus was raised from His death, ascended into heaven, and will return and make all things right forever. But since that day has not come, we wait.
Consequently, in one sense, Advent connects us to those we read of in the Old Testament who ached and waited for a long-promised Messiah but died long before His arrival.
In another sense, Advent reminds us that we, too, are waiting. Waiting, not for Jesus’ birth, but His return, a return will bring to an end our long battle with sin and all its terrible consequences. He will usher in the new heaven and earth, where; there will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away. I am making all things new. (Revelation 21:4) And we long for that day.
Lo! He comes with clouds descending,
Once for favored sinners slain;
Thousand, thousand saints attending
Swell the triumph of His train:
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah,
God appears, on earth to reign.
Lo! He Comes with Clouds Descending—Verse One
May God give us the grace to give all of ourselves to this Advent season.
P.S. Advent is a great season to invite your friends who need Jesus to church.