This Sunday, here at Society, we kick off our newest teaching series called Prince of Peace. This advent teaching series, Prince of Peace, will explore how Jesus came to our world during a time of cultural confusion and how he still comes to bring clarity today. How he came to Israel during a time of political and racial division and he comes with his kingdom to bring peace today. He came to the least of society, and as the least of society and he still meets us there with his “good news of great joy for all people” today.
Advent Reflection: Week 3 – Joy
If you were to think of ways to announce the coming, the birth of the messiah, telling people who live for days or weeks at a time on the outskirts of town doesn’t seem like the place you’d start.
And yet, that is where God sent his messengers to announce the birth of Christ.
And there were shepherds in the same region, living out of doors and keeping watch, guarding over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord stood near them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terribly frightened. And the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring good news to you of great joy which will be for all the people: that today a Savior, who is Christ the Lord, was born for you in the city of David. And this will be the sign for you: you will find the baby wrapped in strips of cloth and lying in a manger.”
Out away from their people.
In the wilderness, with their animals.
These are the people who God shared this news with first.
This long awaited fulfillment to God’s promise to his people, was announced first, not to the powerful, not to the religious scholars and teachers, but to ordinary shepherds.
This was a joy that was for all people.
Whether you were well versed in the scriptures and its current interpretations or whether you were illiterate and spent more time with animals than other people.
This joy was for you.
This joy is for you.
Right from the start.
This gospel, this good news, was inclusive.
It started with taking those on the outskirts of society and brought them in.
It met them where they were at, in the fields, on the job and pointed them to the place where long awaited messiah was born.
This season of Advent is to bring us in as well.
The messengers of God, announce this coming of Christ to us, wherever we happen to be, and it calls us to come.
Whether we’re well connected and in a comfortable place in our life, or we feel like we’re outcasts and still trying to figure out how to make sense of it all.
God sends his angels, his messengers to us.
To tell us this good news of great joy that is for all the people.
God brings this news to you.
Whether you feel great or you feel small.
Confident or riddled with doubt.
God bids us come to see this gift he has given us.
In this week, in this season, may the good news of the arrival of the promised one breathe joy into you.