By Rev. Charlotte Ross
Christ Church Amherst
Where are you in your preparations for Christmas? As I write this article there are only 15 days, four hours and 10 minutes left before the big moment occurs. Will you be ready?
The church is in the season of Advent, a time for preparation. What does that mean to you? The hunting for the perfect gift, the decorating of the house, and of course the outside of the home, the baking and cleaning, the writing of Christmas cards, and then of course all the Christmas concerts and Christmas parties of every kind.
Whew, I’m exhausted just thinking about it! But is it supposed to be like that?
Advent has always been one of my favourite seasons. Not simply because I knew that Christmas was just around the corner, but because there always seemed to be such hope and promise during this time of year. The colours of the season, the hymns and readings at church all instilled in me a sense of awe and wonder.
The Advent wreath with its violet and rose or white colours. Lighting a candle very Sunday. The Advent calendar, as a child opening the little door each day to see what part of the Christmas story was being revealed. Anticipation, excitement building each day before Christmas arrives. Is that it is for you?
Have you taken some time to see where God fits into all this? God with us, through the birth of a baby, named Jesus. God came to share our life so that we could be saved form sin and death. This amazing, wonderful story needs to be told over and over again. Just like our own family traditions of Christmas, the stories we tell every year, the decorations we hang, the foods we eat, and gesture we make all remind us of who we are and what we value the most
So it is in the Christian community. We gather together in a church to hear about Jesus, who he was and why he came. We remember that he shows us the human face of God’s love. This wonderful story needs to be told again and again because each time we hear it, we come a little closer to the source of the love that is God with Us.
Slow down, take a deep breath! During this hectic holiday we sometimes fail to hear the message that God came to share with us. He came to love and forgive you and me. If we allow ourselves to accept this love and forgiveness what a marvelous and wonderful Christmas we will have.