Monday, November 30, 2015

Advent Surivial Guide

November 29th, 2015      “Advent Survival Guide”    Rev. Heather Jepsen

Luke 21:25-36 with Jeremiah 33:14-16

Look left, look right,
look anywhere today,
the time of Christmas madness
is surely on its way.

Everyone I know,
seems to be in a tizzy,
gearing up for a season
that keeps us more than busy.

Books and magazines galore,
give tips for this time of year,
how to keep the stress level down
how to hold on to that sense of cheer.

Take a deep breath,
they all seem to say,
we can get it all done,
just not in the same old way.

Don’t make the dinner,
just buy it,
it’s not bad,
just try it.

Don’t throw a party,
or buy a gift,
forget everyone
it’s a matter of thrift.

Forget that homemade scarf
and wrap,
just buy a gift,
right off the rack.

Take it easy,
think of yourself,
let the holidays go,
just leave them on the shelf.

Over and over I’ve read,
the Christmas survival guides,
and I thought the church could use,
a similar gift at Advent tide.

Here in the church,
it’s not Christmas yet,
it’s the season of advent,
which seems a losing bet.

While the Christmas machine,
roars on and on,
we contemplate the coming,
of the arrival of the Son.

What is one to say
of the Advent we look to?
What is the survival guide
for me and for you?

The gospel of Luke
takes us to places most dark.
Not the birth of the Lord,
but the end of our lark.

Jesus warns us of signs,
and he warns us of fear.
The time is surely coming,
the end is drawing near.

Folks will cower in terror,
they will run for their lives,
the son of man is coming,
in the biggest surprise.

As followers we are called,
to turn away from fear,
we are called to look up,
for our savior’s drawing near.

Jesus says that the fig tree,
will be the sign,
you can see when it blossoms,
you will know when it’s time.

Similarly we
can feel it in our gut,
the tide of fear is rising,
but will it be enough?

Be alert, our Lord says,
and don’t fall asleep,
don’t get drunk and distracted,
a great watch you must keep.

Ignore all the calls
of fear and of hate,
turn to each other
before it’s too late.

Be on your guard,
for the time will surely come,
when hope is born again,
and the world in peace made one.

Surely they come,
surely the days,
Jeremiah tell us
that hope is more than a faze.

The promise will be fulfilled,
for Israel and Judah too,
the promise will be fulfilled,
for me and for you.

The righteous branch will spring,
from the house of Jesse,
like the fig tree of Jesus,
it is a sign we will all see.

The days are surely coming
when justice will rule the earth
the days are surely coming,
when peace will have its birth.

This season of advent
is a season of longing
a season of hoping
a season of dawning.
The world around us
is alive with a consumerist hum,
you can buy yourself peace,
you can take it all home.

But here in the church,
in the quiet of now,
we tell a different story,
of hope in God’s somehow.

And so my advice,
to survive these dark days
is to take a deep breath,
and ignore all the craze.

Reject hate and fear,
don’t let terrorists win,
turn to each other in love,
let peace on earth begin.

Don’t be weighed down
by the worries of life,
don’t buy into the fear,
don’t fall prey to the hype.

Let us look to the babe,
born so long ago,
let us look to the future,
a sign of hope let us show.

As the one candle shines,
alone in our wreath,
may hope live in our hearts,
no matter how deep.

Christmas will come,
as sure as we know,
and so will our Christ,
as in days long ago.

He was born in the past,
and he will come again,
he is born in our hearts,
as we share with each friend.

This advent time,
may you turn toward the Lord,
may peace reign in our lives,
now and forever more.

No comments:

Post a Comment