For many of us, Christmas comes like a whirlwind and is gone before we know it, with much of our attention drawn to gifts, food, and family. While none of those are bad things, the purpose of Christmas is to celebrate God sending Jesus into the world to save us from our sins. Gifts, food, family, and other things can be part of that celebration, but if we are not careful, the season is consumed by them.
Advent is designed to help us avoid that. It is a season recognized by the church that traditionally starts four weeks before Christmas. The purpose of Advent is to help us avoid rushing into Christmas, but instead to anticipate it, reflecting on what it means, and to cause us to rejoice at the coming of Jesus.
Advent is a season designed to remind us of the darkness and despair of our own hearts, that God promised to rescue us from that darkness, and that he sent Jesus, born as a baby, to become that rescue.
We have focused the month of December around the season of Advent. The messages on Sundays and the Advent Guide will go hand in hand and will direct our focus together toward Jesus, reminding us that our hope is in him.
Our theme for this year is Songs of the Season. We will talk about the biblical themes and Christ-focused lines of some of our favorite Christmas carols, and how they point our hearts specifically toward the joy and hope of Jesus.
In addition to Advent themed messages on Sundays, we will also be adding a few other elements for the month of December:
This is a great season to invite friends, family, and neighbors to hear about and experience the true meaning of Christmas!
The Advent Guide includes several resources to help us navigate the season. There are family and personal devotionals for each week along with suggested songs and other resources, ways to leverage the season missionally, and creative ways to help you establish Christ-centered traditions.
Our Christmas service is on Sunday, December 23, at 6pm and will happen at Ferris Heights Methodist Church’s building. This is always a special day. Please invite many family, friends, and neighbors to be your special guests as we celebrate the arrival of Jesus together.
What are you giving for Christmas? Not the usual question, but it is permeated with the aroma of the gospel–to give is [much] better than to receive. God has generously blessed us in order to bless others. In light of that, here’s our challenge to you this Christmas and Advent season:
Will you give as much toward the mission of the God as you intend to spend on gifts?