Category: Christian Holidays and Seasons
“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” ( 1 Thessalonians 5:16 – 18) It is odd to think that the typical early Christian did not pay much heed to Jesus’ birth. For them that was not the important thing. […]
This reflection on I Thessalonians 5:16-24 was written by Samuel Voth Schrag and originally published on December 17, 2014. Samuel lives in Arlington, Texas, with his wife Rachel and children Jonah and Hannah. He served as pastor of the St. Louis Mennonite Fellowship from 2007-2017. [...]
This post by Melanie Zuercher was originally published on December 15, 2014. Melanie lives in Newton, Kansas. She is a member of Shalom Mennonite Church in Newton and works at Bethel College in North Newton. – – – – – – Confession: Christmas is not my my favorite time of the year. Was it ever? [...]
Each bee senses that her one obligation is to give the smallest motion of her flight muscles to the collective work of keeping the queen and the colony’s honey stores warm. The whole hive knows they survive only if they shiver together. [...]
Megan Ramer is pastor of Seattle Mennonite Church, a lover of travel adventures both large and small, a Friday Sabbath hiker, and a proud aunt of five of this world’s most adorable little nuggets. (This post was originally published on December 19, 201...
We don’t often think of these opening verses of John’s Gospel as a nativity story, but it is, in it’s own way. It may not have the narrative flair of Matthew or Luke’s version, but it makes up for that with its theological heft....
Mark 13:24-37; Isaiah 64:1-9 Preparing for the first Sunday of Advent one year, I asked a colleague, Samuel Voth Schrag, what he was thinking about for his upcoming sermon “Oh,” he said, “I’m going to talk about Dues ex machina is a literary device. [...]
–By Amy Yoder McGloughlin (originally published December 1, 2014) O that you would tear open the heavens and come down, so that the mountains would quake at your presence— as when fire kindles brushwood and the fire causes water to boil— to make your name known to your adversaries, so that the nations might tremble. [...]
–By Ben Wideman (originally published December 2, 2014) We all long for restoration. We live in a culture that is consumed with fear that we aren’t good enough. Our fears make us worry about finding the right job, and keeping that job when we when we find it. [...]
I’ve been tempted to cancel Lent before, but never Advent. I’m a true Advent-lover. At church we sing Advent hymns—no Christmas carols until Christmas Eve. At home we do Advent candles and a calendar. Even my 13-year-old daughter takes Advent seriously...
I’m finishing off my Sabbath year of mostly reposted blogs with some Advent devotions I wrote for REJOICE! Devotional Magazine some years ago. They are kept in the same style: key verse, the larger Scripture reading, a reflection on the Scripture, a response. With the last Sunday of Advent being the 24th of December, Advent is a bit short this year so I’m starting early. I hope they help you to reflect on the unexpected and “upside-down” nature of the coming of Jesus into our world. […]