Monday, December 03, 2007

Advent: season of hope

The Advent candle lit Sunday morning in our worship service represents hope fulfilled in Jesus.

The story of Israel is one of promise, covenant and failure on the part of Israel. We see this time and again in the Old Testament. What marks the end of the Old Testament is one of renewed hope, yet somewhat despairing, because though a number of Jewish exiles had returned to the land, and the temple had been rebuilt, the grand promises of the prophets in the Old Testament and the hope of the Messiah which was kindled into a blaze during the Intertestamental period (the time between the Old and New Testament) were not yet realized. Israel was under the heel of a foreign invader; it certainly did not seem that God was King in the way he had promised.

Hope in the midst of despair. When we're in despair our hope can wane, diminish with even the danger of disappearing. We can lose all hope, which means we're in despair. How many of us are there right now concerning something or maybe a number of things in our lives. Things in which in our heads we can see God's promises for us to help in those matters, yet for whatever reason they remain unresolved.

Hope is found in the story of God and in the coming of a little baby boy into the world, something we remember and celebrate this season. Because of this coming, this advent, we know that by faith we will receive all the benefits and blessings from God through this. Not just for ourselves, but for all. This is God's gift to all.

Advent is a season of hope. Let's not let go of that hope, but hold on to it by faith. Let's do so with others, and let's look for the beginnings of God's fulfillment to us in Jesus here and now, in the unfolding of God's good will first in our lives, and then through them into the lives of others.

5 comments:

lorenzothellama said...

We have three purple candles and a pink one. I think the pink one gets lit on the third Sunday in Advent.

I am very worried about Maalie's hand. I don't like the look of that black spot at all. Did you ever read Treasure Island and Blind Pew?

The Blonde accused Maalie of being 'a runcible fellow'. Maalie isn't the Blonde you know. In anycase he was wearing his little woolly hat, and also hadn't shaved for a few days if the stubble was anything to go by.

See you at Martin's for Christmas Pud? I'll ask Shammy too.

Love Lorenzo.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Lorenzo,
I'm ashamed to admit that I've reading nothing of either of the two. My failure to read the classics is one of my 1,874 regrets in my life. Too old now, really too busy, too whatever....

The black spot on Maalie's hand: unless its that small spot on the tip of his finger, I don't know what you're referring to. If it's that small it's probably just something to keep one's eyes on, as the doctor told me once, or I read it or whatever.

Runcible I just read is a nonsense word, though dictionaries describe it as some fork, three pronged, for pulling out weeds? Well, anyhow it does sound like it has some use so maybe that was a compliment from the Blonde.

Wool sounds good. I don't know as much about advent candles as I ought, but I'll pay closer attention, now that you bring it up.

Would love to be at Martin's. How many (miles) are you from there? I'm not sure how many thousand we are. It would be nice to meet you and everyone else there.

NaNcY said...

hey brother ted!
i love Jesus and the hope that God has brought to humans! God is Good!

Ted M. Gossard said...

Amen to that, Nancy!

Anonymous said...

So many people don't care about global warming. They disregard the need for conservation and instead drive SUVs. They don't care about the Federal deficit/debt (outside of partisanship) and they don't care earning $400k for an $80,000/year job will eventually bankrupt the country. They have awarded themselves $400k pay and retirement packages, loading up their friends on the payroll during the boom 90s through the real estate bust while all services which the program were intended to fund now get cut to pay for it.
They think they are going sometime during/at the end of this life, and disregard the poor souls who are left behind.
Sounds like the Italians who were used to plan World War II and the Holocaust, and not by accident.
These are the people who will be here in the United States when bankruptcy is declared and society deteriorates into chaos. And they will deserve the anarchy which ensues.

The gods used the Italians to ruin life in the 20th century.
The gods used the Italians to ruin life in A.D. with The Church.
The Church controlled Western Civilization. As the largest land owner in Europe they controlled the monarchies. They were responsbile for slavery, revenge for African invasion and rape of Italy. They created religious discontent, ultimately leading to the disfavored dumping ground known as the United States.
And each generation of these Italians were sold on "earning", only to be reincarnated as a lesser life form subsequently, punishment for their evil.
"The West Bank, where the end of the world will begin." With xtianity.
And they were reincarnated into the ghetto to be punished as crack babies and in drive-by shootings, both intentionally inflicted on the black community and poetic justice for inflicting these horrors on their hated enemies.
On their brothers.

The gods are the commensurate rapist pathology, focussed on control.
It is appropriate the picked the Italians for the downfall of man. The perception offered is exactly how the gods are. Unfortunate for the Italians, they were deliberately altered to match this pathology so the god's behavior could be justified in the context of their positioning.

I will forever regret and resent being picked for this event.
I may not have learned as much as I have but I WOULD have gotten more done and made more progress, and at the end of this life that's all that matters. We are all reincarnated and must re-learn about the gods and their methodology.
This is the worst possible senario in my life.
Despite your attempts to force your positioning, "protection" and their fulfillment of the promise I am t have a "real chance" in a future life, I will take my hatred forward to the next life.
The empty promise is I will have a real chance of going, and if I retain this experience there is no way in damngod motherfuckers that would ever be possible. Secret is they have the freedom to remind me of this life, "executive priveledge" retained, sabotaging all progress up to that point. And they WILL utilize this tactic.
This is a lost cause. They are degenerate filth who positioned in a guarentee to fail, ensuring the are not to blame for their failed promise.
The upside down star is my symbol. There is of course no Satan. That's just the gods with different clothes on.

Another feature which the Gods offer as a clue is very foreboading and ominous. Mt. Zion is a mountain to the north of Diablo (the eye of The Beast) and one which has a working quarry at its base. Consistant with the decay we experience in society, Mt. Zion is being eaten away, slowly stripped of its resources, until one day paradise will be gone forever.

The gods killed JEsus because he was (became) evil.
Whitey deserves xtianity.