December / January

posted Nov 30, 2017, 4:46 PM by Cameron Hubanks

One of the things I appreciate about being an interim pastor is being able to learn and participate in all the different ways there are to worship and to “be church”.  Whether with polka music or the drums of our Native American sister and brothers, there are as many different expressions of faithfulness as there are people God invites into this wonderfully odd fellowship – and that is ALL of us!   

Amid all the diversity, some things remain the same year-after-year, place-after-place. The seasons of the church calendar keep us connected and help to focus our hearts and minds on the creative and restorative work God calls us to do. 

The season of Advent is one of those magical times that transcend congregations.  These weeks before Christmas present an opportunity to revisit the shepherds and angels, the holy family and a common innkeeper, and to become immersed in the story and traditions that surround Jesus’ birth.  There are candles to be lit, carols to be sung, costumes to be worn, and scriptures to be read.  Each, in its own way, connects us generation-to-generation, and rekindles the hope, peace, joy, and love that Jesus brings to all the world.  

And on December 25, just when the world is ready to pack up the decorations and move on, the church’s season of Christmas begins! In these Twelve Days of Christmas (really!), we are invited to journey with the magi and revel in the miracle of a Savior that has been born in a far away land among people who are foreign and strange. 

Next comes the season of Epiphany – an odd word that means a new revelation and insight.  It is the light and hope of Christ that we carry into the New Year, bringing with it many important questions and challenges for how we live out our faith in our world today. 

We often mash the seasons together, but each offers us something particular and distinctive – the anticipation of Advent, the surprise of Christmas, and the creative joy of Epiphany.  This year, I invite you to savor each season as a separate gift, to find those traditions and activities that feed your souls and renew your hearts.  There is deep wisdom in the way God chose to enter into our world – as an infant, vulnerable and innocent, equipped only with the transforming power of presence and love. 

May the many joys and blessings of these seasons be yours!  Grace abounds!          

Pastor Laura