ADVENT 2019

Welcome to Advent at Chase Oaks Church. During the Advent season, we celebrate the moment that God sent Christ into the world because He wanted an everlasting, loving relationship with His creation.

As you prepare for Christmas, please see each week of this Advent guide as an invitation, an invitation to spend time with God, to reflect, and to worship. Each week will feature a devotional around the four key words of this Advent season: hope, peace, joy, and love. Each week will also feature a variety of art forms to aid your time of reflection and worship, including poetry, music, and visual art. Our hope is that you will be amazed all over again by the incredible love of God and the hope we can all have because Jesus came for us.

WEEK 1
CREDITS

WEEK 1: HOPE

One Who Came on the Waters of Time Series Incarnation 2013 by Grace Carol Bomer
ABOUT

“The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” —John 1:14

POETRY

Of the Mystery of the Incarnation
by Denise Levertov

It’s when we face for a moment
the worst our kind can do, and shudder to know
the taint in our own selves, that awe
cracks the mind’s shell and enters the heart:
not to a flower, not to a dolphin,
to no innocent form
but to this creature vainly sure
it and no other is god-like, God
(out of compassion for our ugly
failure to evolve) entrusts,
as guest, as brother,
the Word.

DEVOTIONAL

Finally, the long waiting period came to an end: The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. The birth of Jesus brought mixed feelings of hope. Some hoped their oppression by the Roman Empire would end. Some hoped their illness would be cured. Some hoped for political power. Even his own family and friends misunderstood him.

How about today? What hope does Christ’s birth bring in your life?

It’s good and fun to see all the lights and songs. The shopping and family gatherings are exciting. But are we missing the real meaning of the season?

If we grew up in the church, we have the tendency of making Christmas a routine: A program we prepare for once a year. We sometimes forget what it truly means to have Immanuel, God with us. Our hopes and wishes are superficial and materialistic.

The birth of Jesus is the ultimate expression of God’s love for us. What other king would leave his throne and glory? Who would choose to be limited in the body he created? Who would volunteer to be weak and vulnerable? And how many fathers would give up their sons for others?

As we prepare for this Christmas, let us bring our hearts to the only King who loves us and gives us hope. To him who said, “I know the plans I have for you…plans to give you a hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11).

CREDITS 

We would like to thank CCCA at Biola University for allowing us to adapt their Advent Project. We would also like to thank the curators for the Advent Project: Professor Emeritus of Art Barry Krammes for his work on selecting the Scriptures, Poet Amy Munson for selecting all the poetry, Art Historian Dr. Rachel Hostetter Smith for curating the artwork, and Rachel Glazener for selecting the music for the project. Through the layering of Scripture, prayers, and the arts, The Advent Project offers a wonderful opportunity for daily reflection, an occasion for us to pray with our eyes and ears as well as our hearts and minds. We hope you are blessed.