Monday, 28 November 2011

Newsletter reflection: 4 December 2011

Advent Candle Liturgy Week 2 – Peace -Young Adults

1st reader: We have grown up in a world that's known continual wars.
2nd reader: From time to time, the place has changed, and the reason has changed, but fighting continues.
1st reader: Even within communities and homes, people don't seem to be able to live in peace.
2nd reader: Yet Jesus comes as Prince of Peace – as the one who can help us do what we just can't on our own.
All young adults: We look for Jesus to bring peace this Christmas.

Good morning

As we progress through our Advent readings, today Isaiah speaks to us of comfort and John calls us to repent.

We live in a world of turmoil, and often it seems our individual lives are in constant turmoil as well. What would it be like to be comforted, to actually be at peace? What would it take to achieve this – John's answer would be to repent – to turn back to God.

Sunday School children know the “right answer” to just about every question is “Jesus”. The same is true in the adult world – although nothing seems quite so simple from our point of view. What we want when we seek comfort in the turmoil of our lives is to be taken out of the turmoil – we want to be rescued. What God offers is usually something different.

When we repent – when we turn to face God – what we are doing is focussing on a different point. The turmoil is background, it's placed in perspective. We're not rescued from the trauma – we're shown that it is not as important as we thought it was. If we focus on the goodness of God, how important can any evil or pain in this world actually be? There is no comparison.

That's not to say we should not act, when we are able, to change things that are wrong with this world. In fact the prophets call down to us throughout the ages, that we must act for justice wherever God gives us the ability to do so – we must care for the widow and orphan, the homeless, the poor. Turning to face God will always inspire us to do better, to seek good not just for ourselves, but for all people and especially those least able to help themselves.

Today, as we journey through Advent, let's take the time to repent, to turn to focus our lives once again on God, and to get everything into perspective.

Grace and peace

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