We are about to go on a journey together. This has been a year that no one could prepare for. Death of famous celebrities, Covid, elections, politics, murderous hornets and much more. These are things happening on a global scale that have given rise to “2020” being used like a swear word.
Closer to home, at Chapel Ridge, it has been a year of loss. We lost beloved members of our church and we have endured a lot of pain because of it.
We cannot prepare for a year like this but we can choose how we end it. As I was spending time with the Lord and talking to other leaders in the church it became clear to me that we need to focus on what matters most. The passage of scripture that helped give me a vision for what this church could be at Christmas, even during a pandemic, was Matthew 22:37-40.
37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’[a] 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b] 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
The advent devotional is intended to take this first law, “Love the Lord your God” seriously. We are choosing to take time during a busy season to slow down and seek the Lord, worship the Lord, proclaim the Lord and commune with the Lord. Each week of the devotional will focus on one of these themes. Each day at 6am, the devotional will be posted to this blog and emailed to the church mailing list. I pray it helps you to focus on him this Christmas.
Our Reaching Outward initiative to bring love to Michele Heights through a Pantry/Toy drive was a tangible way to “love our neighbour”. This Sunday you will have an opportunity to adopt a family, fill a pantry box, provide gifts for children and share the love of Christ.
I pray that these two church wide events help to deepen your love for God and love for neighbour this Christmas. Please make a concerted effort to engage in both the devotional/fasting/prayer as well as the Michele Hieghts drive. My heartbeat is that by engaging in these two activities, it will not only help us love the Lord and love our neighbour, but connect us together as a church. Some of us may be coming to in person services, others may be choosing to stay at home, but we are still His church!