“O Come, O Come, Emmanuel.” This well loved him reminds the church of the Season of Advent.

Advent begins with the 4th Sunday before Christmas Day and ends on Christmas Eve. But what is Advent all about? The word Advent means “coming” and it is a season to remember and reflect upon, and to prepare to celebrate, the coming of Christ in various meanings:

• The promised coming of the messiah to the Jews.

• The coming of Jesus, born in Bethlehem in fulfillment of ancient prophecy.

• The continual coming of Jesus into the hearts of believers by grace through faith.

• The promised return of the risen Christ in final victory.

During Advent we are encouraged and enabled to engage in times of preparation; of penitence, prayer, scripture reading, hearing the Word in sermon and song, so we may prepare our hearts and minds for a blessed celebration of Christmas.

This preparation is often necessary for most of us in our journey through this fallen, broken world leaves us broken, fearful, and depressed.

Advent reminds us of the proclamation of the angel that first Christmas, “I am here with good news for you which will bring great JOY to all people.”

I pray that you may be so blessed during this Advent Season that you too will be able to sing whole heartedly on Christmas Day, “Joy to the world the Lord has come!” That carol goes on to remind us said this JOY will come when “Earth receives its King!”

May you “receive and rejoice” this Christmas!