Advent = Waiting (when we don’t want to)
At staff meeting today, we were discussing how families handle our children’s Christmas morning anticipation. Some have a firm no-earlier-than-7am rule. Others had kids who would sneak downstairs and peek into their stockings, but hold off until the whole family was there to open the gifts. Some kids, unable to contain their excitement, would unwrap all the presents at 4:30am, leaving their parents and siblings furious and disappointed. Whatever your family custom is, we all get it: waiting is hard.
When is the last time you had to wait for something you really wanted? Maybe you were waiting for a particular job or promotion, or waiting for a significant life change like getting married or having children. Maybe you were waiting for relationships to heal or grief and pain to fade away. Maybe you’re waiting for something right now.
Advent, the season that begins the church year, is all about waiting. Just as God’s people waited for hundreds of years for the birth of the Savior Jesus, we too wait for His return when he will make all things new, restoring relationships, our bodies, and even the planet we live on.
At this time of year, the world around us says “consume,” yet Advent says “wait.” By rehearsing the waiting, this distinctly Christian season is designed to cultivate our awareness of God’s actions–past, present, and future, providing the perspective we desperately need. To guide us in the waiting we have created a devotional booklet, written by people from TCC, for all to enjoy and use in morning or evening devotional times. I encourage everyone to either pick up a copy on Sunday at the connection hub, or use this PDF version.
We certainly know what it is like to wait here at TCC. With the second senior pastor transition in five years, we know all too well what it’s like to wait for a pastor. Maybe God is trying to teach us something.
Peace on Earth
Our sermon series this year, “Peace on Earth”, draws on the book of Isaiah, and is in part inspired by Baroque composer G.F. Handel’s masterful setting of these texts in his 1741 oratorio Messiah. Each Sunday we’ll hear a live excerpt from this monumental work, performed by our own musicians and singers. Don’t miss it!
Advent Musical Excerpts, 2016
Sunday November 27 | Advent 1 | Isaiah 40:1-5
Eric Andersen, Tenor
Sunday December 4 | Advent 2 | Isaiah 40:9 & 7:14
“O Thou That Tellest Good Tidings from Zion”
Kristin Neprud, Alto
Sunday December 11 | Advent 3 | Isaiah 40:5
“And the Glory of the Lord”
Sunday December 18 | Advent 4 | Lessons and Carols Service
“For Unto Us A Child is Born”
Sanctuary Choir and string orchestra
Lessons and Carols
In addition to the regular Sunday services, on December 18th we will have a special service of Lessons and Carols service featuring our children’s choir, middle school girls a cappella group, percussion ensemble, string orchestra, sanctuary choir, and worship team. It will be a joyful musical feast to celebrate the coming King! Our fabulous children’s program, “Live the Adventure” will run as usual at the 9:30a service.
Susan Foster, our resident artist, has created beautiful visuals and graphics to accompany our sermon series. You will see these in an art installation in the lobby of the church, in the sanctuary, and on our print and web materials. Thank you Susan!
O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here,
Until the Son of God appear.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel!
O come, Desire of nations, bind
All peoples in one heart and mind;
Bid envy, strife and quarrels cease,
Fill all the world with heaven’s peace.