ADVENT: A SEASON OF HOPE
Dear Parish Family
As we approach the Season of Advent we are encouraged to lay hold of the hope we have in Jesus Christ. The Gospel was written for times such as ours. The level of anxiety throughout the world is at one of its highest levels. The highest most have ever experienced. With the end of the Cold War many thought we could live now in relative peace. “Wars and rumors of wars” were for those far away. Sadly, it didn’t take long for the humanity to show its fallen nature. With instant communication and a global community, the brokenness of humanity has, and continues to, spread destruction throughout the world. Leaders who are expected to uphold justice and peace, divide, promote discrimination, hatred, abuse and murder. This, coupled with several natural disasters, has brought a very dark cloud over all of creation. It is in these dark times that the light of hope shines the brightest!
Throughout the New Testament we are called to prepare for times such as these. To fortify our souls for the long journey of faith. To know the Gospel message and proclaim it as a “tested” message of hope and love. No where in the New Testament are we told that we will be able to avoid such times as these. Rather, we are told to prepare for the long haul. To know the message of God’s hope for all mankind and to be able to be a living example that God’s message, His living Word, is not a crutch or a false shelter to hide behind or justify evil but the power of love to bring healing and wholeness to a broken world.
The message of Advent has always been a call to prepare. To prepare oneself for the journey of faith by knowing personally the scriptures. Not just the pastoral happy bits but the whole dynamic truth. To strengthen one’s prayer life as a power to sustain not just a wish list. To stir within oneself the courage to live the Gospel in community. This is the way of a sustained living hope in God’s salvation.
“Prepare the Way of the Lord!”
The Reverend David Warren