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.
John 1: 10 – 14 (NRSV)
10 He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. 11 He came to what was his own, and his own people did not accept him. 12 But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or the will of man, but of God.
14 And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth.
Today our reflection is based on the four candles of the Advent wreath, Hope, Love, Joy and Light and will cover verses 10 – 14 of the beautiful prologue to John’s Gospel:
Hope: “He was in the world, and the world came into being through Him”.
In faith, we know that “He was, He is, and He shall be in all glory”.… Unchangeable, God is forever creative… His love renews all things and is the source of our hope; despite any external contradiction, we rejoice! Our Hope endures! But then comes sadness:
“Yet the world did not know (or recognize) Him”. He came to what was His own, and His own people did not accept Him”
With this comes the pain of rejection, of not belonging… God’s heart is aching and at one with the heart of those who feel invisible, who long to belong… and for us all the challenging question: how often do we recognize the face of God in that of the least of our brethren? How best to acquaint them with hope?
Love and Joy: “But to all who received Him, who believe in His Name, He gave power to become children of God”.
Christmas is a homecoming to love. What a present! What a joy!
At a time when so many lives have been disrupted by Covid 19, so many have to face an empty chair, and so many feel homesick, cut off from their loved ones, uncertain about their future, how wonderful it is to come home to the comforting love of a heavenly Father who longs to keep us safe in his embrace… who invites us to take stock in the warmth of his presence, with his promise of healing, of restoration and renewal.
God’s love is our present and our future, with Him, we see:
Light: “And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen His glory”
Now comes the gift of wonder as, through faith, we share in the beloved disciple’s vision of that glorious Easter Morning.
John entered the darkness of the tomb and saw light; with him, we see that the Christ who came on earth is one with the Divine Presence.
In His light is our light and for those who follow Him, He is their hope and their way home to Eternal Love.
Hope, Love, Joy and Light be with you this Christmas!