When I was a child I remember the excitement of everyday opening the next window in our advent calendar. In those childhood years the countdown to Christmas seemed to take forever. Likewise, in Church, we also have a way of counting down to Christmas. Each Sunday we will light a different candle on the Advent Crown, with the centre candle being lit on Christmas Eve at the Holy Communion Service. Not only do the candles give us a countdown, each one has a particular meaning behind it. In the order of lighting the meaning of the candles are Hope, Joy, Love, Peace, and Light. As we prepare for Christmas, each meaning is meant to help prepare us for the 2nd coming of the Lord Jesus.
Hope – “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead” (1 Peter 1:3)
Joy – “I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.” (Luke 15:7)
Love – “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)
Peace – “And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7)
Light – “When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” (John 8:12)
Have you experienced these in your life? Accepting Jesus as your personal Saviour will let you experience Hope, Joy, Love, Peace, and Light for yourself.
May I wish each one of you a Merry Christmas and a Peaceful, Christ filled New Year.