Reverend Dawn M. Conti

 

From The Pastor:

Fruitful Waiting... Unwrapping the Gift of Advent

Are you ready? Ready or not, Christmas is coming! This is the season of the year when we prepare for the Christ child. What gift do you want to give Jesus this year? Perhaps it’s a gift of kindness or patience or service to others? Maybe you’d like be more regular about your devotion time. We have 26 days in Advent to get that gift ready.

But for many, the days of December are so full that they pass by without notice and before we know it, it’s Christmas Eve. After all, there is so much to do: shopping, baking, wrapping, writing and sending cards. But don’t let the commercial side of the season rob you of the spiritual joy of the journey to Christmas.

 

Advent, which began last Sunday, is the first season of the Christian year and includes the four Sundays before Christmas. Advent (meaning “coming”) is a gift in itself; an opportunity for us to draw closer to God and one another opening our lives to the Holy Spirit. Advent is the sea-son to prepare as a church and in our own individual lives to receive the miracle of Christmas. It’s also an opportunity to get our gifts ready for Jesus by giving back to God and others.

 

As a church, some of the youth got a jump on the season by participating in Operation Christmas Child and/or by decorating the church for the season. This Friday night at 7 pm, the joint Cantata between Kanapaha Church and Faith Church will be offered in our Sanctuary and then again in Faith Presbyterian Church in Melrose this Sunday at 3 pm. Thank you for those who are singing, leading and supporting them with their presence and worship.

 

The Adult Sunday School Class has begun a special Advent Study, “Held in God’s Grace” that will be offered through Dec. 20th. Thank you for those who are leading; it’s always a greater blessing to lead a study than to attend.

 

Why? You learn more in the preparation. Thank you for those who faithfully participate in an effort to grow in the their faith. The church has purchased Advent Devotional guides for you to use each day during Advent in your private time of devotion. You can find them in the sanctuary on the table in the narthex or on the back table close to the kitchen door in Memorial Hall.  If you prefer on-line devotionals, perhaps you’d like using the on-line Advent devotion, Follow the Star. You can find it at www.d365.org/. Read them alone or with your family.

 

Consider lighting an Advent wreath at home during devotion time as a way to reclaim the holiness of the season. One you’ve been filled, find a way to pour out a blessing each day on those you know and even those you don’t. Want to make God smile? Practice a random act of kindness anonymously for each day of the season.  Find your own Advent rhythm to prepare so that when Christmas does arrive, not only will you be able to more fully appreciate and welcome the miracle of the birth of our Savior, you will have something to give the King!

 

In the joy of preparation,

 

Pastor Dawn