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for God so loved

And there were sheep-herders living in the fields just outside Bethlehem, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them. The glory of the Lord shone around them.

~ New Testament Gospel of Luke 2.8-9 (paraphrased)

12/24 is the fourth Sunday of Advent. The traditional theme is love. In our culture, love is widely misunderstood. Perhaps in every culture individuals want love to fulfill or complete them; somehow supply what’s missing in their lives. Such thinking isn’t entirely wrong. Love is fulfilling. It does complete us.

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joy for all

“Why am I so favored that the mother of my Lord should visit me? The moment your voice reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill His promises.

~ Elizabeth greeting Mary, New Testament Gospel of Luke 1.43-45 (paraphrased)

12/17 is the third Sunday of
Advent. Joy is the theme. One of the oxymorons of Christmas is the carol that begins, “Joy to the world, the Lord has come.” If the Lord has come, should there not be more joy in the world?

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if only we could see peace

“If you could only see this day what would bring you peace—but now it is hidden from your eyes.

~ Jesus’ announcement before His final entry into Jerusalem
New Testament Gospel of Luke
19.42 (paraphrased)

12/10 is the second Sunday of Advent. Peace is the traditional theme. Ancient prophets foretold that a Prince of Peace would come to Jerusalem, even describing his arrival:

“Rejoice with shouts, Jerusalem! Watch for your king. He will arrive righteous and victorious; yet lowly, riding a donkey—on a colt, the foal of a donkey.”

~ Zechariah 9 (paraphrased)

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