Disciples, Apostles, and Saints!
The word we probably hear the most in church this time of year is “prepare.” Which seems natural, right? We’re preparing our homes for the holiday, our church for its big day, and all that stuff that happens with Christmas.
But the preparing that the season calls us into isn’t shopping and meal-planning. We are to prepare for the advent of Christ’s return.
I really do love getting into “the Christmas spirit” this time of year. I am a big fan of anticipation. So getting fun things, making sweet treats, and wearing fun socks are all part of the season. But even trying to remember that “Jesus is the reason for the season” and “putting Christ into Christmas” don’t actually turn our minds to the season that is actually at hand.
In Advent, we read about the coming of Christ into the world long ago as a reminder of God’s in-breaking love for creation. And therefore, to put us in mind to watch for it now. And to long for his coming to transform the world again.
There are ways these ideas about the season of Advent match “the Christmas spirit” we are familiar with. But perhaps it is less as a reminder to be good and generous occasionally, and more an invitation to prepare for a way of living founded on that as normal. In other words, to prepare for our world to be as it is in heaven.