Pastor’s Column November/December 2019

Diagram of the Christian Year

You have heard the phrase, “Oh, he or she marches to a different drummer.” Sometimes we say, “He/she

waltzes to a different tune.” When somebody is different from the usual, we use such language to describe their way of being. This means the person hears a special, even other-worldly source of inspiration. Now, near the end of the calendar year, let’s think about how Jesus-followers intentionally live a life that sounds forth the rhythm of Christ – the divine heartbeat – the music of the heavenly band. We do dance to a different tune – march to a different beat.

The Christian year begins with Advent, the Season leading up to Christmas, when we celebrate Jesus’ birth into the world. We are remembering and bringing to our fellow human beings the “Good News of Great Joy.”
Over the centuries people of faith have changed culture everywhere by making a big wonderful deal of the miracle of a virgin girl bearing a heavenly child, Jesus Christ, the Son of God. The first Sunday of Advent is day one of the Jesus-follower’s year.

The Feast of Christmas is followed by Epiphany (when the wise men visited the Holy Child), the Baptism of the Lord (when John Baptist baptized Jesus) and the Season of Ordinary Time (when the Lord Jesus was present in the world). In the spring, Christians turn their hearts and minds to Jesus’ journey to Jerusalem to offer Himself as a sacrifice for all peoples and all of creation. We keep the Season of Lent until the great Feast of Easter – the glorious day of Christ’s resurrection from death to New Life. We celebrate the Feast of the Ascension (Jesus’ return to His heavenly home) and almost immediately we celebrate the Feast of Pentecost (when the Holy Spirit entered the world to guide the people of God).

The world barely notices the great wonder of the coming of the blessed Holy Spirit into their lives (celebrated in May or June). Jesus-followers stay mindful of that universe-shaking event by keeping the Season after Pentecost for about half the calendar year. For us, at this moment (November and December) the Season after Pentecost is coming to an end. We dress the altar and the other furnishings of the church in green during this time, to symbolize the promise of eternal life given to us in Jesus by the sacrifice He made for us.

Here we are, just four weeks away from the Feast of Christ the King (the last day of the Christian Year). December 1st we will begin the Season of Advent – in joyful anticipation of Christmas Day, the celebration of our Savior Jesus Christ’s birth. We tune our lives to the rhythm of Christ every day of the year. This is our way of celebrating the Good News of the Lord Jesus at all times.

Blessings, Pastor Margot

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