• revtracyparker

We’re on Our Way to Bethlehem

Updated: Nov 27, 2019

The season of Advent is a time to prepare ourselves for the coming of the Christ Child, for Christ is coming! That is the mystery of Christmas. This is one of our faith’s deepest truths. Christ is coming! He is always coming. He enters into our broken world. He enters into our wounded hearts. He comes to us in many ways, but during the season of Advent, we set aside the busyness of the world around us so we can anticipate His coming. And, we light the candles one by one as the weeks progress to signify all that His coming brings: Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love.

This year we are all on our way to Bethlehem to meet the Christ Child personally. But who can show us the way? The way to Bethlehem is oftentimes a difficult journey that takes preparation. It’s a little easier to travel if we travel with other faithful people who also seek to know Jesus more fully. Following in the path of others who have gone before us is also a good plan for this journey. Who will show us the way?

Each week of Advent we will move closer to Bethlehem and closer to the Christ Child, following the guidance of those who know the way. For the first Sunday of Advent, HOPE Sunday, we listen to the Prophets. Prophets talk to God and listen to God, so they can show us the way to Bethlehem. Our second Sunday of Advent is PEACE Sunday. The Holy Family made their way to Bethlehem not knowing what their future held for them, but they carried the PEACE of God with them because they knew all that would happen was part of God’s great plan. They were willing to let God use them in HIS great plan for humanity. They can show us the way to Bethlehem and they can show us how to have PEACE as we willingly allow God to use us in all the ways that Christ reveals Himself to us today. JOY is the theme of our third Sunday of Advent. The Angels spread the news to all those whom God chose to use in Christ’s coming. They let the glad tidings be known throughout the land so ALL could celebrate God’s special Son, born in a manger in Bethlehem. Angels can show us the way to Bethlehem and to the very presence of Christ in our midst. For the third week of Advent we will follow the Angels to Bethlehem. Finally, for the fourth Sunday of Advent, we will celebrate God’s great LOVE in the coming Christ Child. Shepherds and Magi all came to witness this great event. They came with gifts and they came to pay him homage. They can not only show us the way to Bethlehem, they can also show us how to share our LOVE for Jesus with the world.

Christmas Eve, we will arrive in Bethlehem together and will worship the newborn Christ Child. We’ll be there to witness our HOPE fulfilled, we’ll know the PEACE He brings, we’ll celebrate His coming with JOY and we will know the fullness of God's LOVE when we encounter Him in Bethlehem. We will share a service of Lessons and Carols and the NATIVITY will come to life before our very eyes. We will all gather at the stable, at the manger of Jesus, and we will give ourselves fully to Him as we worship the Newborn King.

Won’t YOU join us on this journey to Bethlehem for the season of Advent and witness the miracle of God’s LOVE made known to us in Jesus the Christ? Prepare yourself to become a part of the Christmas story and to be challenged by what it means to know Christ fully.

Blessings,

Tracy

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