Advent greetings,

In these first days of December, we begin the season of Advent. This is a team of waiting, anticipation, and hope. Even as the dark draws nearer and the days continue to shorten, we hope that the Light of Christ will dawn again, this time in us, as we live out Christ’s loving way here and now. 

As I prepare for the season, I’ve been thinking about this concept: incarnation. Christ’s birth marks the point of God becoming human, being “with” us, as Emmanuel. Our Prince of Peace, born so many years ago in a humble stable to poor migrants, is born in us as we continue to live out his story and proclaim the Good News of his life. The Creator is one with us, the creation.


But before the Gospel narratives of Jesus’ birth, we go back into the first words of the Hebrew Scriptures to see where this began. God speaks existence into being, an incredible cosmic explosion of light. On the first day of the creation story, God says, “Let there be light.” And the light separates from the dark, and we see day and night, followed by moon and stars and sun, all pointing us to how God, in creation, shines out. 


And then, with Christ, this shining light, which illuminates out from the center of this cosmic explosion, joins us in body, flesh, and lived reality. To incarnate is to fill and become a part of human lives. It was an actual birth, with all its pain, mess, anticipation, and resolution. Incarnation happens in the Christmas story, and now we live out the season of Advent and Christmas as a reminder that the Light is with us. 

How do we see the Light now? Is this just an old story to remember, a season celebration to honor? Or could it be that incarnation continues? We believe that the light that exploded from the cosmic creation now carries and indwells us, God’s people. So when we desire to see the light and look around us hoping to see Good News, the words I hear for God’s people become, “Let us be light.”

We continue Jesus’ incarnating work by becoming the Light ourselves. “Let us be light” is a prayer that as Christ now lives in us, we shine out the hope, meaning, and joy that he brings. You, me, we are now the light(s). We are the ones in whom God chooses to dwell. We must be the light!

It can be challenging to “be the light” sometimes. I know I don’t feel very “incarnated” a lot of the time. I feel dimly lit but not bursting with the Light that I know Christ is. Do you feel that way, too? 

This is why we need this season of waiting. Waiting involves contemplation, listening, hoping, and noticing the signs around us. That is what we do as we practice Advent — we watch, wait, and hope for the light. 

But this year, rather than only watching the night sky for a little glimmer of hope or a bright star — what if we also learned to look outward into one another’s faces to see the light? “Let us be light” reminds us that we are those lights that shine. We hope this is true; we encourage one another to shine and give away our light so that others might light up as well. (Think about our Christmas Eve services, when we pass the candlelight, one to another, on that silent night.)


“Let us be light” is, of course, a call to action and mission. To be light is to show up in dark places and offer help. To be light is to speak truthfully and kindly to one another, helping one another along as we seek the light. To be light is to serve others, hoping that we might all reclaim and rediscover God’s beautiful light in each of us, the Light of the World now dwelling in human flesh. 

This season, we will examine what it means to “be light.” We’ll hear the stories of prophets and shepherds, pregnant women and frightened men. And we’ll remember that we are to be that light now, carrying on and living out God’s mission of bringing light…the good news…of great joy…to all people!

We hope to see you this Advent season—services at 10:30 am on Sundays and a Christmas Eve service on December 24 at 7 pm. 

In the light, 

Pastor Seth

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