On Sunday my church hailed the first day of Advent.  As celebrated by churches in the Western tradition, the season of Advent begins on the fourth Sunday before Christmas and is celebrated on each successive Sunday leading up to Christmas.

It is an important time in the life of a Christian congregation.  The church is decorated and special programs, especially choral performances, are usually part of the calendar.  All this is done in joyful preparation for the birthday of our Lord Jesus Christ.

This year, because of COVID, the preparations and programs are somewhat curtailed. I will especially miss singing with the choir during this holy season.

A little over two-thousand years ago, shortly before the first Christmas day, I imagine that some learned men in Persia were studying their star charts and detecting signs of the coming birthday of a king.  Soon they would set forth on their long and difficult journey to Bethlehem.  I have always thought that the traditional depiction of the wise men standing with the shepherds at the nativity scene is mistaken.  The men from the east probably did not arrive until some months after our Savior’s birth.  It is a small point.  The essential thing is the fact that Jesus came, lived and taught among us, and died for us.

King of Kings!  Lord of Lords! Hallelujah!!!

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