The Christian season of Christmas actually begins on Christmas Eve and lasts for twelve days, ending on January 6. (No, the twelve-day season of Christmas did not start with the song. It was the other way around.) The time before Christmas is called “Advent”, a season of preparation for Christmas. Christians, around the world, prepare for celebrating the birth of Jesus by remembering the longing of the Jews for a Messiah. In Advent, we’re reminded of how much we ourselves also need a Savior, and we look forward to our Savior’s second coming even as we prepare to celebrate, once again, His first coming at Christmas. The word “Advent” comes from the Latin word adventus, which means “coming” or “visit.” In true keeping of this season, we should keep in mind both “advents” of Christ, the first in Bethlehem - and the second which is yet to come.
I am preparing a series of special messages on the Advent of Jesus Christ. And we will begin each of these worship services with a lighting of the Advent Candle. Families, representing the life of our congregation, will lead us in a reflective moment in the lighting of candles at each service during the weeks of Advent and on Christmas Eve. Each candle brings us closer to the time when we recall Christ’s birth as well as His Second Coming. Each candle represents a certain perspective during this season we call Advent. We will light the candles of: Hope, Peace, Joy, Love during Advent and the Christ candle on Christmas Eve. I pray that, during this Advent season, you and your family will grow closer to God through our worship together.