Before Jesus’ birth, the angels appeared to some shepherds on the hillside outside Bethlehem. They came announcing good news of peace and renewal – tidings of comfort and joy.
We asked 25 people to prepare a meditation for us to read and listen to every day through Advent. We are delighted to share their work with you.
God bless you as you read, listen and pray.
9 Worship the Lord in the splendour of his holiness;
tremble before him, all the earth.
10 Say among the nations, ‘The Lord reigns.’
The world is firmly established, it cannot be moved;
he will judge the peoples with equity.
11 Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad;
let the sea resound, and all that is in it.
12 Let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them;
let all the trees of the forest sing for joy.
13 Let all creation rejoice before the Lord, for he comes,
he comes to judge the earth.
He will judge the world in righteousness
and the peoples in his faithfulness.
In this Advent season, verse 9 reminds us to come before the Lord. He is Holy. We bow before Him as the people of God and we adore Him. As we do this, we want to share this with others for we see how fantastic God is. We want all to know the love of God.
The Advent hymn we have just heard reminds us of the royal gold, gold of obedience in turning to God, and the incense of lowliness; acknowledging the presence of God in all of our life, in all we say and do.
I remember riding my bike round the garden as a nine year old singing this hymn and being struck by how holy God was and wondering how we as people could ever match up with that – and yet – God gives us hope, as does the Psalmist…In verse 13 it says God comes: He will return.
In the second part of the passage our spirit rejoices alongside the beauty of creation. We join with the heavens in rejoicing (which is an awesome thought in itself!) The sea, the fields, the trees will rejoice as they reflect the creativity of the Creator God.
Our challenge today is to cherish this creation and protect the planet, through the packaging we buy, the recycling we bother to do …in making the effort to buy Fair-trade goods.
As we see the seasons change around us we are in a truly marvellous part of the world: the autumnal colours, the sun, the wind, the rain, the frost, all preparing the earth for its next season of bounty: Just as we are preparing for the return of Jesus, alongside celebrating when He walked on earth.
Those who have grown vegetables through Lockdown this year, will have seen the wonder of a seed buried in the ground. Sometimes when you are in a dark place, it is hard to see what God has in store, but He is a God who plants you, to bring life and as you grow, you see light and bloom.
May you bloom today and rejoice with all creation as we sing that our God reigns.
You and I are a part of God’s Living Hope.
Let us pray that, we will be able to rejoice this Advent. May we act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with our God. Amen.