I am NOT going to wish you a Merry Christmas, YET! The season in the church is called Advent and it is all about preparation for Christmas. So, instead of getting the sleigh before the reindeer, let’s prepare.
Psalms 72:1a, 4
Give the king your justice, O God…May he defend the cause of the poor of the people, give deliverance to the needy, and crush the oppressor.
Alexis Engelbrecht, a Master of Divinity Student at Philips Theological Seminary in Tulsa, Oklahoma, writes: “As I read this psalm, I think of how often I fall short of expectations I set for myself.
Like the psalmist, I possess what some call lofty ideals. I feel the challenge to avoid complacency within an unjust system while being reminded of a faith tradition bigger than myself and a force mightier than any institution.”
This psalms calls for all people of faith, at all times and places, to continue to live into the divine vision of the kingdom of God on earth. The power behind this vision, the power we need to prepare ourselves to use and to be agents of is hope.
Hope persists in the prayers of those who came before and dwells within it the gift of being co-creators with God. Hope is what we need to be preparing for as we journey towards Bethlehem. For in the child to be born, the hope for the world is made manifest for all to see, for all to hear, for all to touch, for all to know. Prepare to be the bearers of hope this season of Advent.
Rev. Craig S. Kirby-Grove
Pastor, First Christian Church
(Disciples of Christ), Maryville, MO