THE PROMISE OF A JUST and RIGHTEOUS ONE
Jeremiah 33:14 -16
This is the first Sunday in Advent.
I love this season, because we developed a family tradition several years ago, of what we call ‘doing Advent’. What that means, is that today I pull out the bought Advent wreath, the candles, which may be mix matched, if I haven’t been able to get the correct advent colors, (have you ever tried to get the right color advent candles the Saturday before Advent? Let me tell you it’s nearly impossible), and our homemade advent additions. These include the artificial leaves we add to fill the wreath out, the last year’s Christmas cards, a hymnal, a children’s book of Advent stories ( even though the girls have out grown them), and of course, the candle snuffer. Each night we ‘do Advent’. We gather at the table that holds the wreath, light a candle, share our reading, pray for the family whose Christmas card was chosen that night, sing a carol, and of course, extinguish the candle. Everyone takes turns sharing a different role each night. It’s a welcome, microcosmic, foretaste of a time, when ‘swords will be converted into plowshares’.
For a few years we also lit a Peace, Hope and Justice Candle. I think we’ll do it again this year. This candle, created during the latter years of apartheid, became a symbol of hope, and a sign of the struggle, against this demonic system. It remains a symbol of the promise in our text, “In those days and at that time, I will cause a righteous Branch to spring up for David; and he shall execute justice and righteousness in the land.” V 15.
So, today we light the candle of Hope, leaning toward the future. Christ has come, and Christ will come again! He will implement justice and righteousness in our world. Even so, come Lord Jesus, come!
Lord Jesus in this Advent season we eagerly await your coming, with power and great glory. Fill us with your hope that all darkness will recede into your marvelous Light! Amen.
For more on the Peace, Hope and Justice Candle see: http://www.kairoscomotion.org/2005march/candle_form.html
THE REVEREND JOANNE BROWNE JENNINGS