This Sunday marks the first Sunday of Advent. This is the New Year’s Day of the Christian Church Calendar. It’s the season in which we celebrate and meditate upon the “Advent” (latin for “Coming”) of Jesus into the world in the Incarnation. This season begins this Sunday and lasts until Christmas.
In this time, we stare deeply into the reality that the Creator God of the universe came into human form by way of human birth.
The season is marked (as with every Church season) with a profound tension. We meditate on the darkness into which Christ entered the world, as well as the light he brought in his Coming. Advent is a time that we sit in the tension of past, present, and future, and see how this most-differentiating belief of Christianity has profound implications on these places in time, and indeed, the whole of human life and experience.
This is why, for this year’s Advent, I’ll be doing a series meditating on how Advent affects seemingly unrelated parts of human life: art, politics, sexuality, singleness, women’s ordination, social justice, Evolution, suffering, humor, the city, and more.
There are several other ways you can engage in this season:
First, I will be (slightly) updating last year’s Advent Mixtape and posting that next week for free download.
Also, you can follow along with my church‘s Advent Prayerbook (download the pdf), which is also a free download. If you’re new to prayerbooks or “lectionaries”, this is the best time to start. As the beginning of the Church’s New Year, this Sunday is when most annual Lectionaries and Prayer Books begin. If you would like some more guidance on how to use one of my favorite Prayer Books, the Book of Common Prayer, you can find that here.
Finally, last year I wrote a pretty well-received Advent series on this blog. You can find those posts here.
We’ll also be talking about other things in this time. We’ll be continuing our series on women in ministry, and I’ll also be having seme really big blog news next week.
I look forward to engaging in this time with all of you.
[image credit: “Black Fire” by Barnett Newman]