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  • Writer's pictureSt Giles Online

The Rector's Advent Message

Last Sunday, Wil James spoke in his sermon about his dog Max, who likes nothing more than to park himself across the threshold between two rooms, half in one and half in the other. It’s a strong visual image and one with which I full identify at this time of year. We are in Advent, but Christmas for many has already begun. At St Giles we have already begun to host Christmas carol services and concerts. But we are only just in Advent. Spiritually I find myself, like Max, straddling two celebrated visions of Christ, the expected and the incarnate.

If I am being honest, I have always been more of an Advent person than a Christmas person. The tension at the heart of Advent is thrilling and soul-searching. We are asked to consider a number of profound themes in the narrative of redemption. Particular emphasis is placed upon the final things: heaven, hell, death and judgement. Christmas is of course just one (rather nice and philosophically profound) moment in God’s plan of salvation, and it is the beginning and not the end.

The child in the manger asks no difficult questions, calls no disciples, rebukes no leaders, he is just still and calm and blessed. This could not be a greater contrast with the Christ of Advent, who calls people to live lives worthy of their redemption, to reject the worldly lure of sin.


So don’t neglect Advent and all that it offers. Perpare yourself in heart and mind to receive the gift of the Christ-child this Christmas, that when he comes again to judge the quick and the dead, we may be found an acceptable people in his sight.

Amen. Come Lord Jesus.

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