You might be trying to get into the Christmas spirit, but are you in the Advent spirit yet?

If you mention the word ‘Advent’ to the average non church going public, their first thought is likely to be some sort of calendar with doors that you can buy to hang in your house during the Christmas season. You can get all sorts of Advent Calendars now… from the simple traditional ones which have a small treat each day, to the more extravagant Advent beer calendars and even Advent sock calendars that I’ve seen advertised this year. My kids have found a Lindt chocolate calendar quite engaging so far this December…

Sadly, Advent – in any form – is not a part of many family traditions these days. In most Anglican churches however, Advent readings, candle lighting and deliberate reflection in the weeks leading up to Christmas, still have significant meaning for many. If we take the time to explore and understand the tradition more fully, we can grow to really appreciate the Biblical context it can bring to the Christmas season. Advent can be the way that we seek to keep the focus on Jesus during the Christmas season which, if you believe the shopping centres, started at least a month ago. In a culture that has made it all about other things, we have found that Advent readings and times of personal reflection can be a beautiful centrepiece to the way we celebrate this time of year.

Advent comes from the Latin word ‘adventus’ which means ‘coming’ or ‘arrival’. For Christians it is the time of year when we specifically look to the coming of Jesus Christ, first in his coming to bring our salvation and then his subsequent return to reign in glory. The Advent season begins four Sundays before December 25, so the start date varies from year to year. This year Advent began on Sunday, December 2 (not on December 1 as the Advent calendars would have you believe!). For four weeks, the idea is to meditate on Christ’s coming, much like God’s people who waited thousands of years for him to arrive.

Just because our culture has forgotten or co-opted our tradition for other benefits, it doesn’t mean there is no benefit in Advent observance. Quite the contrary, I believe there is no greater reason for Christians to observe a faithful Advent, for through our observance we have an opportunity to understand more deeply what Advent means to us. We will then be able to explain it to those who ask – and maybe even to those who don’t ask if we are bold enough! At the end of the first week of Advent, it’s not too late to get into the Advent spirit. I pray that this Advent may mean more to you than ever before and that you get a chance to share that meaning with each other, and particularly with those who may have thought it was all about a calendar…

Sunday Services:

7:30am - Sung Eucharist

9:30am - Family Worship

(07) 5618 8238

186 Robina Town Centre Dr. Robina 4226 QLD

PO Box 3065 Robina Town Centre 4230 QLD