Happy Advent season! What? I thought this was Christmas season. Well, in a way it is, and in another way, it isn't. We are actually in the Advent season of the church year, and this season doesn't have much to do with Christmas. I mean, there are no presents for Advent, no Santa, no colorful lights, reindeer, television specials, or anything like that. Advent does get some extra candles...which are lighted in churches until Christmas Eve, when they are taken down and put away until the next year. Advent also has a wreath which is popular, signifying eternal life. Advent actually has to do with the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ (Advent means "coming" in Latin). He is coming.
"Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" is a song that makes children all over the globe get excited about Christmas morn. Replace Santa Claus with the Christ Child and you can start to understand the excitement of Advent. One song that I love during Advent is "Lo How a Rose E'er Blooming." This song quotes Isaiah's words about a prophecy that a "branch" shall grow out of a stump." This means that although God's people were cut down by invading armies, dispersed, destroyed, and demoralized, a small surviving remnant (the "branch") will sprout and grow into a kingdom again. Of course, we believe that this branch was the Lord Jesus who was born in Bethlehem 2000 years ago. So we remember his coming and growing and redeeming the world this Advent Season.
Advent season can be meaningful. Take time to appreciate how new things come from old, how hope springs from hopeless situations, and how many blessings you have. Take time to remember that Christ has come to us and will come again in all His glory.
Happy Advent season!