E-votional - From Hope to Joy, Advent
December 1 -6, 2003


“For darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness the peoples; but the LORD will arise upon you, and his glory will appear over you.  Nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.”

Isaiah 60:2-3 (NRSV)


   Tension, yes this is a season of tension. Not because of the shopping, the parties, the planning or the traffic. There is tension during this season, not due to the loss of loved one, yet it certainly contributes. No, Advent is a tension filled season because of what was, what is and what will be. Advent calls to us, grabs our attention the the birth of Christ, Christ's presence in the world today and at the same time His second coming. Advent, in it's truest sense, is not about Christmas cheer, it is the waiting for the messiah, the One who will change everything. It is when we find ourselves somewhere between the beginning of it all, the birth of Christ, and the end of it all, His second coming. What, oh what, is a person to do? We, who are already-but-not-yet people.

   Hear the Good News, God calls us to be people of advent. God calls us to live a life that has the birth of Christ, life, death and resurrection in the background, as well as the fore front of our life. As advent people we live in this world with Christ among us, within us, bearing witness to all He has done and will continue to do. As advent people we live from hope to joy to hope again. This however is more difficult than deciding upon what type of Christmas card to send to family and friends. Living as an advent person means we are to embody the call God has placed on and in our life. First we live as a forgiven person, sharing that forgiveness and grace with others we encounter. Secondly, we embrace the advent tension, the middle, the now. We have a great opportunity in life, we can share what God has done in our life, share His sacramental revelation which has changed our life and brought hope. We can and must share the joy and love of Christ. Even in the midst of the traffic jams of life, the awkward parties in society. We must seize our faith and share it instead of having something else seize our faith and cast us aside. "Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth . . ."


   Gracious God, thank You for Christ and for His presence in my life. Give me strength to share all He has done and the ways in which you have announced Your presence in my life. Let me live as a person of advent my whole life. I thank You for all You have done in my life and all You will continue to do, for I come to You through Jesus Christ, my Lord, my Savior! Amen.

Grace & Peace

David Banks
Jewett United Methodist Church
PO Box 254
Jewett, TX 75846
(903) 626-4003


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