The Glory of Advent

Advent is a season of waiting and longing, but it’s also a season of celebration and hope. As we crawl into winter, days get shorter, and we feel the cold of our need closing in. This is the setting Advent, but not its plot line. The story of Advent begins with glory lost and Savior needed, but it presses on toward “the sun of righteousness [rising over us] with healing in his wings.”

“…Long lay the world in sin and error pining, 
Till he appeared and the soul felt its worth.
The thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices, 
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.”

Like the sunrise breaking out over the dawn, Christ’s glory breaks into our frail and fractured world. This Advent we are contemplating and celebrating glory that comes to remake us. Christ who makes all things new, renews and restores us, so that his glory will be known in us.

Our sermons on Sunday mornings and in our Christmas Eve service will focus on the Glory of the Incarnation:

Glory Expected, Glory Sent, Glory Embodied, Glory Reclaiming, Glory Arrives.

Our gathered worship begins at 9a every Sunday, and our Christmas Eve service will begin at 6p on Monday, Dec 24.

New in Christ: Fundamentals of Gospel Faith & Discipleship

Spirit Stained Glass

In our current series we are stepping back to consider Fundamentals of Gospel Faith & Discipleship, with particular focus on devotion and new creation. Jesus is the substance of the gospel. The Gospel is Jesus. Jesus making all things new, and in our union with him, we are made new: newly forgiven, newly alive in him, newly filled with his Spirit, new hearts, new loves, newly able to follow and grow into his likeness…new creations.

This summer we surveyed and jumped around for a bit, and now we are moving through the argument of Romans, without necessarily taking every chapter verse by verse. More than teasing out the depth of every verse, we want to get a flow of Paul’s thought in preaching the full-orbed nature of the gospel to us. Man of us, like the early Roman christians, have already entrusted ourselves to Christ and benefit from being drawn in closer and more deeply as we explore the many ways Christ’s redemption takes hold of us, liberates, and remakes us. And for those asking questions of faith and following, this is a good place to start. How does Christ accomplish his redemptive mission? How does he go about making all things new?

Our current pace is roughly one chapter’s thrust/content each week, but as we go, we may take little excursions here or there in the Old Testament to get better context for the ways God has always intended and promised the blessings we now enjoy in Christ. 

Spirit & Truth

This summer, we began the preamble to our new sermon series. Through the fall, we will consider how Christ takes hold of all that we are with all of who he is. How does Christ take hold of our hearts and our lives, to remake us to be like himself? What does he mean when he says, "Behold I make all things new," and how does he accomplish these things in and for us?

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Our adult Sunday School classes will be reading through James Smith's You Are What You Love (read more here), and as a congregation we will give attention and prayer to the practices of discipleship that Jesus has given his church.