Hail the heaven-born
Prince of Peace!
Hail the Son of Righteousness!
Light and life to all He brings,
risen with healing in His wings.
Mild He lays His glory by,
born that we no more may die,
born to raise the sons of earth,
born to give us second birth.
When the page turned from 2020 to 2021, I hoped we would quickly return to a more normal rhythm for our lives. Hardly. The past year has been tumultuous. A year ago, all we wanted for Christmas was to be with family and friends. The economists say a disruption in the supply chain may mean this Christmas has fewer things—as your pastor I want you to know that we might well be better filled by last year's longing than this year's shortage.
A wise person said, "I don't know what the future holds, but I know who holds the future." Jesus is the one who turns a hopeless end into unending hope. He is the one born to be King over all creation—to be Lord over all. The reign and rule of Jesus brings blessing, or as Charles Wesley wrote in 1739, "light and life to all He brings." That phrase from Wesley's hymn, "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" will guide our Advent worship this year. We'll be in those quiet rooms where the Angel spoke to Joseph and to Mary. We'll tend the Angel's song in the fields over Bethlehem, and we'll journey alongside the shepherds to the manger—and then "make known abroad" what we learn from the angel's song and the shepherd's eyes.
I hope you'll join us each week in worship. I pray you'll take the opportunity to gather with your church family to hear again the familiar story and sing again the songs of Christmas. If you do, I think you may find that even in a season of turmoil, you have abiding peace; that even in days of confusion, you have a deep clarity about what matters in life.