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Rev. John Shaver-Home for Christmas: Preparation

12-8-17 Audio

Order of WorshipAnnouncements

“I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way” – “a voice of one calling in the wilderness, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.’” (Mark 1:2-3)

Dear SDUMC Family,

If you’re like me for a few moments after Thanksgiving, I become overwhelmed thinking about all that is to come in the next month – gifts to give, lights to put up, Christmas letter to write, worship to prepare, etc… Then as I pause to catch my breath, I remember there is the season of Advent, and I give thanks! We often talk about Advent as the gift to pause and prepare before Christmas. Last Sunday I shared a meditation from the author and spiritual director, Edward Hays.

Advent is the perfect time to clear and prepare the Way. Advent is a winter training camp for those who desire hope and peace. By reflection and prayer, by reading and meditation, by giving and serving – we can make our hearts and homes a place where a blessing of peace would desire to abide and where the birth of the Prince of Peace might take place. “Daily we can make an Advent examination. Is there a lingering resentment, an unforgiven injury living in our hearts? Are we generous with the gifts that have been given to us, seeing ourselves as their stewards and not their owners? Are we respectful of all God’s children, their ideas and needs? These and other questions become Advent lights by which we may search the deep, dark corners of our hearts.” Edward Hays

This Sunday we’ll hear the familiar scripture that reminds us of John the Baptist’s call to “…prepare the way for the Lord…” (Mark 1:3) I invite you to pause with me and consider how we are preparing for the Lord. How will we come home for Christmas? How will we invite others to come home for Christmas? How can we share the good news with friends and neighbors at our church home?

I look forward to preparing for Christmas with you on this Second Sunday of Advent at 8 AM, 9 AM or 10:30 AM.

Grace and Peace, John

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