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December Newsletter

Dear Friends,

As we approach Advent, which begins on November 29, we are truly looking forward this year. We are looking forward to an end to this pandemic. We are looking forward to the return to normalcy. We are looking forward to a vaccine. We are looking to stay safe and secure. We are looking to find a place of calm and peace. We are looking to have this weight removed from our heart and our mind.

Advent is a time of waiting and watching. We wait for God’s answer, and we watch for God’s solution to our issues. We observe Advent because we are all waiting. And in the waiting for the people of God, we look heavenward. We seek God more now because of our circumstances. The examples of the people of God are encouraging as to how we are to live—Elijah waited in a cave for God to answer. Joseph waited in a prison for God to answer. Daniel waited in a lion’s den for God. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego waited in a fiery furnace. Jonah waited in a large fish. Peter and the apostles waited in the Upper Room. In each of these instances, God came. Not always in the time that they wanted but in the time that was perfect.

Into all of this, a Savior was sent. Into our darkness, a light was sent so that we can walk in the darkness. Into our chaos, a Son was sent who carries the names of Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. He is the Counselor to hear our gravest fears and greatest triumphs. He is the Mighty God who will direct our lives. He is the Eternal Father who reminds us that this too shall pass. And He is the Prince of Peace to give us that heavenly quality of peace in a world filled with distress.

God has come for those bruised by life. God has come for those crushed by life. Our God has arrived for those who find it a struggle to live life. Our God is here to help those who find each day a chore and those who find each day scary. Our God is here to bring hope and peace and joy to us as we face life. God’s answer to our dilemma is to send a Savior. This is what the angel meant when he spoke to the shepherds, “Behold, I bring you glad tidings of a great joy, for unto you is born this day in the city of David, a Savior. And this will be the sign for you—you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.”

So this Advent, may we celebrate that our waiting for a Savior is over. May we announce to the world that the Messiah has come. May we share that light and life has won over the darkness of this world.

We share this together as the Church. And as we share we demonstrate in our actions that we are grounded in grace, living in love and growing for God here at St. Andrew.

Your faithful servant,  Pastor Mark

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