I suppose I could use this space this month to lament about the over commercialism of Christmas (saw my first Christmas shopping commercial before Halloween this year). Or I could use the space to chide those who think Advent is not very necessary and gets in the way of “my” Christmas (remember it’s not your Christmas, it’s Christ’s).
No, I don’t think I’ll do that this year (unless I already did!). Instead I think it is necessary for us to see that these two unique seasons, Advent and Christmas, prepare us, inspire us and unite us in order to be more faithful disciples; better equipped for the future, and better prepared to serve our world.
Advent is a season to prepare and also to reflect upon the majestic work of God in our lives and how God’s love for us leads into God’s greatest act of love, providing a Savior to all of humanity. During the four weeks we intentionally take the time to meditate on this gift of God, and yes, prepare to celebrate the arrival of this gift.
Christmas allows us to share with the world the good news of great joy of the birth of Christ just as it was first announced to the shepherds. As I have mentioned in previous newsletters, now is the best time for us to invite and to include our neighbors and friends into the fellowship at Holy Spirit, so that Christ’s love may be shared and together we head out upon the road of service and witness.
Barb and I are excited about spending our first Advent and Christmas at Holy Spirit. Let us pray for the Spirit’s guidance as we actively prepare and celebrate like those shepherds, by sharing this good news with everyone we meet, and inviting them to be with us to be part of the heavenly hosts singing praises about the arrival of the Savior!
CLIFTON D. ESHBACH