Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Advent 2017
New Beginnings: See? I Am Doing a New Thing!—God
Introduction
God challenges us to new beginnings; because it’s part of His plan for renewal, and He reminds us not to live in the past: “Forget about what’s happened; don’t keep going over old history. Be alert, be present. I’m about to do something brand-new. It’s bursting out! Don’t you see it?” (Isa. 43: 18-19a, MSG).
Yet although life is filled with new beginnings, as creatures of habit we may prefer that our circumstances remain the same. Furthermore, this preference may not only apply to positive situations but to negative or harmful ones, too. How can this be? Do people really prefer the consistency of bad events over trying new experiences, and how is this possible? You may be familiar with the expression, “Better the devil that you know than the devil you don’t.” This saying means that it’s better to deal with unpleasant or negative individuals or circumstances with which you are familiar versus risking a change and finding yourself in even worse situations. And this fear may underlie the reasons some folks resist change. Therefore, we may need to pray that God help us to be open to a new start in our lives, because God promises, “I’m about to do something brand-new…,” (Isa. 43: 19a, MSG), and He invites us to join Him in His recreation.

Consequently, this year’s Advent theme will focus on “New Beginnings: See? I am doing a new thing!--God” But what is Advent? “Advent” means the arrival of an important individual, thing, or event. Christians celebrate Advent to commemorate the birth of Christ. Each year the season of Advent begins on the Sunday that falls between November 27th and December 3rd and lasts for 4 Sundays leading up to Christmas. Then the new Christian year begins with the 12-day celebration of Christmastide, which is from Christmas Eve until Epiphany on January 6th.
[see http://www.christianity.com/christian…/…/what-is-advent.html ] We will again refer to the symbolic candles that are used in the traditional Advent wreath to reflect upon and wend our way through the series of new beginnings associated with the Nativity account. Advent wreaths usually consist of an evergreen wreath surrounding 3 purple candles (Hope, Preparation, and Love), 1 pink candle (Joy), and the white, Christ Candle. As in past years, we will continue our meditations through to Epiphany.
Please join me for this journey of New Beginnings, and may you be blessed by the meditations and challenges to discern the new things that God is doing in your heart and life.


Suggested Daily Scripture Readings:


Sunday-- Isaiah 43: 16-19
Monday—Isaiah 42:1-9
Wednesday—Lamentations 3: 19-26
Thursday—2 Corinthians 5: 15-21
Friday—Isaiah 62: 1-5
Saturday—Ephesians 5: 17-24

Blessings and Peace

Elizabeth Hogan Hayduk
Former Salvation Army Officer (pastor)
CanadaGod challenges us to new beginnings; because it’s part of His plan for renewal, and He reminds us not to live in the past: “Forget about what’s happened; don’t keep going over old history. Be alert, be present. I’m about to do something brand-new. It’s bursting out! Don’t you see it?” (Isa. 43: 18-19a, MSG).
Yet although life is filled with new beginnings, as creatures of habit we may prefer that our circumstances remain the same. Furthermore, this preference may not only apply to positive situations but to negative or harmful ones, too. How can this be? Do people really prefer the consistency of bad events over trying new experiences, and how is this possible? You may be familiar with the expression, “Better the devil that you know than the devil you don’t.” This saying means that it’s better to deal with unpleasant or negative individuals or circumstances with which you are familiar versus risking a change and finding yourself in even worse situations. And this fear may underlie the reasons some folks resist change. Therefore, we may need to pray that God help us to be open to a new start in our lives, because God promises, “I’m about to do something brand-new…,” (Isa. 43: 19a, MSG), and He invites us to join Him in His recreation.

Consequently, this year’s Advent theme will focus on “New Beginnings: See? I am doing a new thing!--God” But what is Advent? “Advent” means the arrival of an important individual, thing, or event. Christians celebrate Advent to commemorate the birth of Christ. Each year the season of Advent begins on the Sunday that falls between November 27th and December 3rd and lasts for 4 Sundays leading up to Christmas. Then the new Christian year begins with the 12-day celebration of Christmastide, which is from Christmas Eve until Epiphany on January 6th. [see
http://www.christianity.com/christian…/…/what-is-advent.html ] We will again refer to the symbolic candles that are used in the traditional Advent wreath to reflect upon and wend our way through the series of new beginnings associated with the Nativity account. Advent wreaths usually consist of an evergreen wreath surrounding 3 purple candles (Hope, Preparation, and Love), 1 pink candle (Joy), and the white, Christ Candle. As in past years, we will continue our meditations through to Epiphany.
Please join me for this journey of New Beginnings, and may you be blessed by the meditations and challenges to discern the new things that God is doing in your heart and life.
Suggested Daily Scripture Readings:
Sunday-- Isaiah 43: 16-19
Monday—Isaiah 42:1-9
Wednesday—Lamentations 3: 19-26
Thursday—2 Corinthians 5: 15-21
Friday—Isaiah 62: 1-5
Saturday—Ephesians 5: 17-24
Blessings and Peace
Elizabeth Hogan Hayduk
Former Salvation Army Officer (pastor)
Canada


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