3 December 2017

Dear family in Christ

The liturgical season of ADVENT marks the beginning of the Church calendar. Advent comes from the Latin word “adventus” meaning ‘coming or arrival’, as it focuses on the coming of the Saviour Jesus Christ. Advent is a time of spiritual preparation marked by prayer – Prayers of humble devotion, commitment, submission and for God’s deliverance. It is a time for calm and reflection, so that we will not get caught up in the hustle and bustle of Christmas shopping and gatherings.

Advent is an opportune time to involve our children in devotion activities at home that directly connects with the worship of God in church. I encourage all parents to use the Advent-Christmas Devotional Guide (available at the reception table) to teach and transmit the Christian faith to your children and involve them in reading the Scriptures, lighting the Advent wreath candles, in interaction and prayer.

Advent reminds us of three ways in which Jesus Christ comes to us:

  • 2000 years ago, as God incarnate in the new-born Jesus at Bethlehem
  • Today, as Christ our Lord in our lives, calling us to follow Him faithfully
  • Some day in the near future, as Christ triumphant, returning as Judge and King

The double focus of Advent is the joyous celebration of the birth of Jesus the Messiah in his First Advent and the anticipation of His impending return as King in his Second Advent. It is a grateful celebration of God’s amazing love for a fallen world. We celebrate the revelation of God in Jesus Christ in his First Advent for the purpose of reconciling the world to God the Father. Having known God as Father and walking in obedience with Him daily, we now look forward in great anticipation to the hope of eternal life in the Second Advent, where God the King will come in power to rule, save and judge the world.

As we live in between the two Advents, we need to live our lives with gratitude to God and with accountability to Him. As we live “between the times”, we are called to holy living and be faithful stewards of what has been entrusted to us as God’s people. In our spiritual journey as a Christ-following community, we have an important responsibility to live lives that bring glory to God and share about Jesus Christ through the gospel message and our loving deeds.

Maranatha

Pastor John