The Greek word the Gospel writers used that we translate as “repentance” is metanoia, which means a change of mind. But what would that look like during Advent?
Here’s a pregnant possibility: Advent isn’t about thinking different thoughts. We spend Advent thinking about someone, the One, and not just the facts about that someone but thinking about him the way a parent ponders an infant’s fingers or a young lover considers his significant other, the way a grandmother in a nursing home checks her watch, eager for the grandchildren to arrive. We think about Jesus. John the Baptist did. A repentant mind focuses on Jesus and remains unattached to other things.
—James C. Howell, Why This Jubilee? Advent Reflections on Songs of the Season (Upper Room Books, 2015)
Which spiritual practice could help you keep your mind focused on Jesus this Advent?
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If you were raised with Christ, look for the things that are above where Christ is sitting at God’s right side. Think about the things above and not things on earth.
—Colossians 3:1-2 (CEB)
Prayer for the Week
O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear.
Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.
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(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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