Weekly Church Service – First Sunday of Advent: 1 December 2019

Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths. Isaiah 2:3a                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

Faithful God,
whose promises stand unshaken through all
generations: renew us in hope,
that we may be awake and alert
watching for the glorious return of Jesus Christ,
our Judge and Saviour,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of 
the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen. 

  • Isaiah 2:1-5
  • Psalm 122
  • Romans 13:9-14
  • Matthew 24:36-44

next week

  • Isaiah 11:1-10
  • Psalm 72:1-7, 18-21
  • Romans 15:4-13
  • Matthew 3:1-12

First Sunday of Advent
“Stay awake!  For you do not know on which day your Lord will come.”

Today’s Advent Gospel is a “wake up” call:
Noah’s flood and the thief are signs that the Lord will return for those who have been faithfully waiting for his return.

Although Matthew is writing his Gospel for a Christian community who expected Christ’s return during their lifetimes, this Gospel can also be read as Jesus teaching us about the reality of our own deaths and being ready at every moment we are given to meet the Lord.

Jesus calls his Church and Christians of every place and time to be conscientious in the call to be prophets, confronting a “sleeping” world with the risks of losing its soul.

These first days of Advent confront us with the reality that this life of ours is indeed limited, that the moments we are given in this experience of life are precious and few, that death is a reality that we all inevitably face.

Advent calls us to “stay awake” and not sleep through the opportunities’ life gives us to discover God and the things of God, to “watch,” to pay attention to the signs of God’s unmistakable presence in our lives.

Our lives are a constant Advent of waiting: waiting to become, to realize, to complete, to restore.  Though such waiting can be agonizing, frustrating, and terrifying, Advent is about waiting in hope, anticipating the good that is possible and purpose that can be fulfilled in the dawning of God’s Christ.  Advent “waiting” is not passive, disengaged waiting for we don’t know what but waiting that anticipates and makes possible now for what is to come. 
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