Advent is a time of preparation

I was thinking about Advent and focused upon the Advent Wreath.   I did a little research into today’s word, wreath.  The use of the wreath has been with us since Greek times when it was used as a crown for winners.  The modern Christian usage as a symbol associated with Christmas originated with 16th century Lutherans in Germany.  They used the wreath and candles to anticipate the coming of Jesus.  Today the wreath consists of 4 colored candles on the edges of a pine evergreen circle and 1 white candle in the middle.  Each edge candle is lit on the 4 Sundays leading up to Christmas and then the center white candle is lit on Christmas Eve and Christmas.  The pine boughs that make the circle represent God.  “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” Hebrews 13:8   God is unchanging and eternal and the wreath circle has no beginning and no end.  The 4 colored candles on the edge represent joy, peace, hope and love.   Joy: Luke 2:10 “But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid.  I bring you good news of great JOY that will be for all the people.”  Peace: Luke 2:14 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth PEACE to men on whom his favor rests.”  Hope:  Psalm 40:31 “but those who HOPE in the LORD will renew their strength.  They will soar on wings like eagles’ the will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”  Love: John 3:16 “For God so LOVED the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”  Lastly, the center candle representing Christ is lit on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day.  Christ: “She will give birth to a son, and your are to give him the name JESUS, because he will save his people from their sins.”

Are you anticipating the coming of Jesus this season?  Meditate on the Joy, Peace, Hope and Love we have through Christ. Give thanks today for His coming to save us from our sinful state and restore us to a relationship with Him.

Advent, a time to prepare our hearts,

Linda

 

 

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