Preparing for Christmas

rencherYesterday, the Gospel appointed for the Fourth and Last Sunday of Advent, John 1:39-55, recalled the “reason for the season.” Meanwhile, the holiday culture might have more of our attention than we may care to admit. In the Song of Mary, the Blessed Virgin Mary shared with Elizabeth about God’s never-failing promise to bless God’s people beyond measure. She offered a precursor to the She offered a precursor to the modern day phrase, “God is good, all the time, God is good.”

I am stirred by the shameless sharing by the Holy Mother about her faith and how she joyfully tells of the goodness of our Creator. Our parish vision advocates that we are called to become bold followers of Jesus. Is there a better time than now to prepare for boldness? Mary’s song beseeches us to give thanks for God’s abundance, share our faith, and bring the light of Christ to this world, all because of Christmas for which we now prepare.

Mary said to Elizabeth, “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked with favor on the lowliness of his servant. Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is his name. His mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation. He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts. He has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly; he has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty. He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, according to the promise he made to our ancestors, to Abraham and to his descendants forever.”

Celebrating the last days of Advent,

– The Reverend Ollie V. Rencher, Rector