Friday 23 December 2022

Advent 2022

I've really appreciated Advent this year, and have been particularly reflecting on how, at Advent, we think towards the time when Jesus will come to Earth again.  We remember those who were waiting for his first coming, and look to the second.

I grew up with my mum talking about how one day Jesus would come again, and there'd be a new heaven and new Earth, and there'd be no more sickness, or crying or pain.  She'd have a body that worked properly again, after this one had been damaged by the polio she caught as a kid.

When I was living overseas in my mid-20s, I reflected on how, in that future, I wouldn't always be far away from people I loved, and I'd be able to be at home.

When I became very ill myself, I took strength from the thought that one day all things would be made perfect, and I would be strong and healthy again.

In recent years, as I've become immersed in stories and statistics of slavery through Just Kai, I've come to long for the judgement that day will bring, as well as the freedom.

This Advent, I've been listening to an Advent playlist compiled by Born and Raised for the World - an account I follow on Facebook, that helps families to follow the church year.  Mostly it's been a background as I go through my day, and has helped orient my thinking.  When Martin first asked me if I'd been particularly struck by any of them, I initially couldn't think of any, although on the second go-through this song stood out - especially the second half.

I've also been reading daily readings from both Langham Partnership and Arotahi which, along with delightful daily Bible cards from our friends Barby and Paul, have helped me sink a bit into the Christmas story.  And on Sundays we've been doing the readings prepared by Laidlaw and lighting our Advent candles (which also get lit a few times during the week, often accompanied by the singing of Advent songs).

It's been a good and reflective time, even though Just Kai work pushed my Christmas preparation into a shorter-than-desirable timeframe, leaving me busier than would have been ideal.

Come, Lord Jesus! 

PS, more of a Christmas thing than an Advent thing, but I've recently also stuck these little icons up around our bedroom, and am enjoying encountering them through the day.  With thanks to Barby and Paul Windsor, who gave them to us last Christmas.


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