Archive for December 8th, 2020


Close your eyes, breathe, and clear your mind. Be still. Center your scattered senses on God’s presence.

REFLECTION: Written by Juan Carlos Acosta

Advent is a time in which, with Joseph and the pregnant Mary, we journey to Bethlehem in anticipation of the birth of Jesus. Pregnant is a word that we most often associate with human conception, but it of course has other meanings. There can be a pregnant pause, or we can be pregnant with grief.  I love thesauruses. I keep a slightly yellowed paperback thesaurus within arm’s reach of me at my desk, and I don’t grasp for it as often as I should. The synonyms of pregnant speak so much to the season of Advent. Significant, weighty, potential; fertile, inventive. This year our expectation and longing for change are heightened. At forty years of age I am not young (likely older than both Mary and Joseph) and yet I am aware that these anxieties and issues are not new in history. I think of the civil and social unrest of the sixties or the pandemic a century ago that shut down churches, schools, and whole cities.  The trappings of Christmas are charming, but I often feel that if we get wrapped up in those (pun intended) that we might miss the significant, weighty, potential, fertile and inventive that are represented in Jesus the Christ being born into this world as very fragile and precious human infant.  Despite all that we are facing I have hope. Hope because I believe that the ways of Jesus can truly change the world if we let them change our own hearts first.

SCRIPTURE: Psalm 67:1-3

May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face to shine upon us, Selah that your way may be known upon earth, your saving power among all nations. Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you.

Pause and meditate on the Scripture.

PRAYER:  Written by Luci Shaw, a contemporary American writer of poetry and essays.

Oh my Lord, keep me from frustration and impatience when I see little evidence of your living and growing in me. Reassure me that waiting time is not wasted time. That your purposes for us all are large and all-embracing enough to hold firm and prevail, no matter the obstacles or distractions. You have told us that “now is the accepted time…now is the day of salvation.” But perhaps your “now” is different from ours. You see our lives from the infinite perspective of eternity, of kairos. We want immediate action, change, growth in chronos, in “real time.” We want to see our problems being resolved. Now. Help us to realize, as those who love and believe in you, that we, too, are pregnant with Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit, and that day by day we are being enlarged. Augment our hope, widen our imagination, and nourish our anticipation that the astounding fact of “Christ in you, the hope of glory” will turn true in each of us in your good time. Amen.

Click on the link to see and hear the music video.

MUSIC VIDEO:  Sacra Profana:  O Come, Emmanuel  (submitted by  Juan Carlos Acosta)

IMAGE: Painted by Connie McCoy of our church

Read Full Post »