Today is the Fourth Sunday in Advent! At this time of waiting for the Birthday of Jesus and preparing, or getting ready for, Christmas, it is reinforcing and encouraging to hear that our theme and the candle for the day is Love. At this time of year, we have the good news of the birth of Jesus, but the birth of Jesus is not, in fact, the subject of today’s gospel reading.
The reading of Christmas story last Christmas was from Luke’s gospel, but this year the reading is from Matthew’s gospel. Luke tells the Christmas story from Mary’s position, but Matthew tells the story more from Joseph’s perspective. When preparing the sermon for today I was interested in the thinking that was promoted by these clear differences in perspective.
I ask you to consider the following Advent Reflections and prayers for Week 4.
The season of Advent continues. Over the last three weeks we lit 3 candles symbolising, hope, peace and joy.
Today we are lighting the candle of love. No other word so completely describes what we know of our God.
For God so loved the world that a child was given…God’s love in human form. We wait in hope and peace, and with joy, celebrating God’s precious gift.
We light the candle of love to proclaim that God’s love is revealed in the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem and we are challenged to proclaim and reveal that same love as we live out our faith here in Australia.
Let us pray,
We give thanks for your love that exceeds our human understanding, and are reminded once more of the birth of your enduring love this Christmas. Help us to have a greater revelation of your love today, so that our lives may reflect your great love to those around us.
In Jesus’ name we pray.
Yours in Christ,