How can we fill the season of Advent with more wonder? As Tom Wright, the distinguished New Testament scholar, reminds us, if we remove Advent—that is, attentively waiting for Jesus’ birth—from the Bible, we lose half the Old Testament and most of the New, including stories of Jesus’ ancestors, the words of the prophets, and the mystery of the Incarnation. Most certainly, if we don’t observe Advent thoughtfully, we will not arrive at Christmas ready for the Christ child. … But if we embrace Advent—this special time of anticipating the mystery of the Incarnation—we will find our celebration of Jesus’ coming at Bethlehem filled with wonder and awe.
—Trevor Hudson, Pauses for Advent: Words of Wonder (Upper Room Books, 2017)
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But the angel said to [the shepherds], “Do not be afraid, for see, I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord.”
—Luke 2:10-11 (NRSV)
Prayer for the Week
Holy One, guide me as I reflect on the wonder of Jesus’ birth this Advent. May Jesus be born anew in my life. Help me to show his love and grace to others. Amen.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.
This year, The Upper Room Chapel is celebrating Advent with preachers from across the globe in a special Advent Around the World Series. Hear preachers from Ukraine and the Caribbean, just to name a few. Join us on Facebook or YouTube each Wednesday at 11:00 a.m. (CST) for a moment of prayer and worship this Advent season.
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.