Nov 10, 2022On the Cusp of Advent

On the Cusp of Advent

Kim Snodgrass Two-minute read.   Resources

On the cusp of Advent is an indispensable, fundamental, extra Ordinary Time of the church year winds to a close. Hopefully, these months have provided ordinary opportunities to find and explore those things that nourish your soul, put your faith into action, focused attention on those you love, and renewed yourself in body, mind and spirit so that now, as the church year begins anew with Advent, Jesus will continue to invite you to live an ordinary life shaped by the gospel – the good news about what God has done, is doing, and will do.

The season of Advent begins essentially where it left off; Christ is on the throne, and we will be cautioned to keep awake and stay vigilant. Throughout Advent we will be invited to consider both comings of Jesus beginning with prophecies about the second coming, working backwards to the first coming in Bethlehem, to John the Baptist, and ultimately to hearing the Hebrew prophets foretelling of a Messiah.

The word Advent means coming. Former Archbishop of Cantebury Rowan Williams describes it as a time of …

… waiting for the birth of Jesus: we remember that time of waiting as the Bible shows it to us, as a time when people were indeed longing for something that would change everything; and at the same time, not knowing exactly what that something would be….When Jesus comes into the life of the world, it is something…unplanned, overwhelming, something that makes a colossal difference. We long for it, and yet we don’t quite know what it’s going to involve. But this is a bit odd, isn’t it, you might say; surely Jesus HAS come into the world, and by now we ought to know what sort of difference he’s made. But the truth is, we don’t know the sort of difference that Jesus MIGHT make. We know some of the difference he’s made in our lives as individuals; to the life of the Christian community, the Church, to the whole world. And yet, there’s more. We’re STILL waiting to see what might happen if Jesus is allowed into our lives a bit more fully, a bit more radically.”

If you’d like to learn more about the Church Year – the observances, celebrations, and seasons ahead – the Episcopal Church offers a wonderful resource.

Kim Snodgrass is Assistant to the Bishop for Christian Formation.

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