Today was the first Sunday of the season of Advent which marks the beginning of the liturgical calendar in the Christian Church.
This year we are using an Advent resource that comes from the Mosaic Holy Bible. This is a beautiful and well crafted biblical and devotional resource, arranged in such a way that each week presents a variety of content for reading and reflection. Each week follows a theme appropriate to the Church season and the content includes full-color art, Scripture reading, a historical reading, a contemporary reading, a prayer, creed, hymn or quote; and space for reflection.
Our focus this morning was on longing and we leveraged these words from John Paul II (taken from the Mosaic Advent Devotional):
Advent…helps us to understand fully the value and meaning of the mystery of Christmas. It is not just about commemorating the historical event, which occurred some 2,000 years ago in a little village of Judea. Instead, it is necessary to understand that the whole of our life must be an ‘advent,’ a vigilant awaiting of the final coming of Christ. To predispose our mind to welcome the Lord who, as we say in the Creed, one day will come to judge the living and the dead, we must learn to recognize him as present in the events of daily life. Therefore, Advent is, so to speak, an intense training that directs us decisively toward him who already came, who will come, and who comes continuously.”
Have you ever thought of the weeks of Advent as an intense training season? I would love to hear how your faith community engages the four weeks of preparation before Christmas. Do you celebrate the season of Advent. If so, how?
This morning we introduced a new song by Chris Tomlin entitled, “All to Us.” This song worked really well coming out of the message, leading us into the celebration of the Sacrament of Communion. It has a hymn-like richness and quality to it and presents some beautiful images of Christ. I love the chorus which declares:
Let the glory of your name be the passion of the Church
Let the righteousness of God be a holy flame that burns
Let the saving love of Christ be the measure of our lives
We believe you’re all to us.
You can listen to Chris tell the backstory of this song at the New Song Cafe from Worship Together.
Our music set this morning included:
- Shout of the King (Matt Maher)
- As It is in Heaven (Matt Maher)
- Forever Reign (Hillsong and One Sonic Society)
- Call to Worship (Matt Redman)
- All to Us (Chris Tomlin)
Learn what other communities of faith experienced today in worship at The Worship Community.