Advent 5

Come, thou long expected Jesus,
born to set thy people free;
from our fears and sins release us,
let us find our rest in thee. 
Israel’s strength and consolation,
hope of all the earth thou art;
dear desire of every nation,
joy of every longing heart.

Born thy people to deliver,
born a child and yet a King,
born to reign in us forever,
now thy gracious kingdom bring.
By thine own eternal spirit
rule in all our hearts alone;
by thine all sufficient merit,
raise us to thy glorious throne.

                                                                                              Charles Wesley

On Sunday our church is offering a Service of Lessons and Carols.

Through sumptuous scripture and song, the salvation song of faith and love will be spun out during our 9:00 AM worship service.

Last night during rehearsal for Sunday’s service I was moved by the beauty of it all.

In the sanctuary were some forty people who gave their voices and instruments to the intensely personal thing that is expressing faith publicly.

The organ held us, the oboe wrapped us, the strings danced us and the voices wove a witness that rolled through the sanctuary and into my heart.

Come, thou long expected Jesus.  Come, set us free!

Set us free from our so-small sense of what is possible.

Set us free to move into the huge of grace and the life-shift of fully throwing in our lot with you.

Take up the spaces in our heart colonized by cynicism and shine instead the light of hope.

As we spend this fifth day of Advent intentionally breathing Holy Presence, may we each honor the prayer of our hearts:

  • From what do we long to be set free?
  • How can our freedom spark a movement of healing in this, God’s world?
  • What keeps us from saying “yes” to freedom and why would we waste a minute more in bondage?

Light a candle, sing a song, breathe ten intentional breaths, take a walk and smell the air.  Do whatever it is that will remind you that you move and have your being in the company of a God who calls you to freedom.

Pray with heart:  Come thou long expected Jesus.

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