In this second week of Advent, Bishop Ward encourages us to not be afraid and to be open to receive Christmas joy.
See this and other Advent videos, devotions and resources on our Advent 2015 page.
Grace and peace to you in this Holy season of Advent.
The song from Isaiah 12 beautifully proclaims, “Surely it is God who saves me, I will not be afraid for God has become my salvation.” In this Holy season, we trust, we lean forward as we await the coming of Jesus Christ to us at Christmas. We do not fear. Rather we anticipate the coming of the One who is strong and sure and good and gracious and merciful. This One who comes among us in such a humble fashion, born as a small infant, placed in a manger, the child of poor peasant parents, worshiped by royalty.
This beautiful Haitian art demonstrates the generosity of God to us in the birth of Christ. The heavenly lights shine and wise ones from afar come bearing gifts for this One who will reign over all things on this earth and in heaven.
As we approach this third Sunday in Advent and anticipate the lighting of the third candle, the candle of joy, we give thanks that the joy of the Christian life is a strong joy, an abundant joy, a faithful joy. Abby Martin, president of our United Methodist Youth, shared in a moment of centering in a meeting recently, this great wisdom. We are sad about things that have happened in our world, yet we are not afraid. She reminded us of the song of the angels, “Fear not, I bring you tidings of great joy.”
May our fears subside in the light of Christmas joy. May we be courageous receiving the gift of Christmas joy. May our joy be made complete in the coming of Jesus Christ this Christmas.