Advent Week One

A Season of Hope

Each year, the first candle we light on the Advent wreath is the candle of hope. On Sunday we listened to the prophet Isaiah. In his prophecy, the voice of God is heard, saying “Be glad and rejoice forever in that which I am about to do!” (Is 65:18) Isaiah spoke to a people under great stress. They had no guarantees of health, safety or political stability. Yet, the prophet foretold God was “just about to do” something that would bring deep gladness to God’s people. Centuries later, those who knew Jesus reflected on promises like this one and saw their fulfillment in Mary’s holy child.

This Advent we may struggle to hope. The scripture invites us to join our hearts with the faithful over millennia who found strength in looking forward. Imagine with the prophet what God is just about to do!

You are invited to create a candle lighting area in your own home for the Advent season. Use what you have available — clip something from a bush outside and put it with a few votive candles. Each weekend there will be suggested creative “make-it” pieces for you to add to your Advent wreath or Christmas tree. A large envelope with some paper supplies is being mailed this week to your home if we have your address. In keeping with this week’s devotional, you can await your specialty paper envelope or go ahead and use something at home for the envelope suggestion from Jess Dager below! Pastor Kris would love to have photos of your worship spot to add into our Sunday worship videos. Email them to or attach a photo in your phone texting app and send it to her cell phone!


If you have not yet listened to our Tuesday devotional from Jess Dager,
give 3 1/2 minutes right now for a “prayerful pause” in your day!

Here is the Monday Music Video for the First Sunday of Advent. A light and hopeful reminder of how God can change our perspective as God tells us “who we are.”

Here is the Sunday Morning Worship Video link. Geoff Schmelzer sings beautifully the beloved hymn, “O Come, O Come Emmanuel.”

Hood Memorial Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Dunn, North Carolina invited their youth to lead worship on the first Sunday of Advent this year. They created this lovely 12 minute long video which tells the story of Mary’s cousin Elizabeth and her husband Zechariah as they receive the good news of the Messiah’s coming birth. They did an AMAZING job sharing this important angel story. Celebrate the truth that leadership can come from “a little child.”