We invite you into a season of Advent. Here you will find some curated resources to guide you through the upcoming four weeks including reading, poetry, music, and family resources.
“Come, Lord Jesus!” In this time between Christ’s first and second coming, we know that through his death and resurrection Jesus has won a decisive victory, and although we see some definite and significant effects of that victory, we still wait for its consummation. Though he has torn down diving walls of hostility, we still feel the alienation and injustice of functional walls. Though he has erased the guilt of our sin and fully reconciled us to the Father, we still feel the effects of sin and darkness in our lives. Advent gives us space to name those tensions and to cultivate anticipation for the One who will come and bring full, glorious resolution to it.
The liturgical calendar exists so that we can order our worship and our lives around the regular and dramatic telling of the story of our Lord Jesus—his birth, life and ministry, death, resurrection, ascension, and his promised second coming. The Christian year begins with Advent, which consists of the four Sundays leading up to the celebration of our Lord’s birth at Christmas. Just as Lent prepares us for Easter, Advent is a season in which we cultivate longing for the coming of our Lord. As the people of God in the Old Testament expected the coming Messiah, we let their expectation train our hearts to expect his promised second coming. And that means doing the work to prepare our hearts not only for the celebration of Christmas, but also for the many ways that Christ breaks into our world—past, present, and future—to rectify that which is wrong.
Advent crashes into our world, suddenly. There is a quick swing from the festivity of Thanksgiving to the starkness of advent—from feasting to fasting. Advent is traditionally a season of humility and preparation, a mini-Lent. It’s a season to take stock of our interior life and bring our whole self before God. Fleming Rutledge says:
“As we prepare to enter the Advent season, the Church hunkers down. The [Anglican] Church in America has been known for being really scrupulous about observing Advent; it’s one of the best things about us. We don’t decorate the church during Advent; we don’t sing carols; we don’t move to Christmas until the eve itself. Advent is a time for making a fearless inventory of the darkness. This is a call for character and courage...At no time is there a greater contrast between what the church teaches and what is going on all around us.”
Advent Service Schedule
Advent I: December 3, 9am & 11am
Celebrate with us at the Christ Church Ceili and Chili Cook–Off directly at 12:30pm!
Advent II: December 10, 9am & 11am
Advent III: December 17, 9am & 11am
Advent IV: December 24, 10am
Christmas Eve Services: 5:30pm & 8pm
Resources for Advent
Theology and Literary Devotionals:
Advent Resource Round-Up by David Taylor
Advent: The Once and Future Coming of Jesus Christ by Fleming Rutledge
Light Upon Light: A Literary Guide to Prayer for Advent, Christmas, and Epiphany compiled by Sarah Arthur
Watch for the Light: Readings for Advent and Christmas published by Plough Publishing House
God With Us: Rediscovering the Meaning of Christmas ed. by Greg Pennoyer and Gregory Wolfe
Heaven and Nature Sing: Twenty-five Advent Reflections to Bring Joy to the World Hannah Anderson
Art and Poetry:
WinterSong: Christmas Readings Madeleine L'Engle and Luci Shaw
A Widening Light: Poems of the Incarnation Luci Shaw, editor
Waiting on the Word: A Poem a Day for Advent, Christmas, and Epiphany Malcolm Guite, editor
Wounded in Spirit: Advent Art and Meditations David Bannon
The Art of Advent and Approaching Christmas Jane Williams
The Advent Project Biola University's Center for Christianity, Culture, and the Arts