Divine Direction

I love Advent because it reminds us that Jesus is Emmanuel— God with us. He is the ultimate ruler—the King of kings and Lord of lords. While we do not know the future, we know the one who does. This Advent, we as a church are going to explore the difference that Jesus makes in our everyday lives.
Today’s passage is from the Gospel of Matthew which begins with a long genealogy of Jesus, reminding us of the long, complicated history of the nation of Israel and the many ups and downs, twists and turns they experienced. And as we reflect on this amazing work of God in history, the story takes another turn. It is
as if the curtain opens on a grand drama that is at play, and then the spotlight focuses on one man named Joseph experiencing a great difficulty and dilemma.

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Today is the first Sunday of Advent. Advent means “coming.” It is a season of the church year that is meant to be for preparing and getting ready for the coming of Jesus. And I have to tell you, I have been ready for Advent for weeks—since well before election day.
As Americans, we have all been through an interesting time given the conclusion of a brutal election cycle. Whether your candidate won or lost, all of us have been bruised by the tenor of the campaign this past year. I’ve been saddened to witness the anger, the frustration and downright meanness that was displayed on both sides, and I’m glad the tone has changed, and now we are looking to what changes will come with a new president.

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