Advent 2: you people shape up!

During last Sunday’s sermon I mentioned that Christians have a really bad reputation for being judgmental. Others simply don’t view us and our lovely church buildings as welcoming. It seems that we are good at telling others to shape up when we are in pretty bad shape ourselves.

In some ways the Advent/Christmas season is a reprieve from our reputation. This time of year is homey and cozy and pretty — like a big bowl of macaroni and cheese to share with the world. (Sure, mac & cheese can be pretty!)

So I took a personal challenge from the Epistle reading for 12/4, even though I didn’t use it in the sermon. In this passage, Peter encourages the people to remain faithful, “leading lives of holiness and godliness”. (2 Peter 3:11)

What I read here was a challenge to worry less about others, and to focus more on how I could allow Christ to work in me. No one needs a break from spending time with an authentic, faithful, and humble person. That “at home” feeling is real at any time of year when one is at home in the Spirit.

May all feel welcome in God’s house and among God’s people, both in Advent and beyond.

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