Advent 1: Hope Coming to Discouragement

One Advent Candle.jpg

Advent is Latin for "coming" and has traditionally been understood by the church as a time to prepare our hearts, spirits, and minds for the remembrance of Jesus' first coming at Christmas, as well as the coming we look ahead to. This year, Leah will be asking what it means in this present moment, the Bay Area in late 2017, to experience God's "coming" in practical terms, along with the gifts that coming brings.

This first Sunday of Advent, Leah considers the traditional gift reflected in the first Sunday of Advent: the gift of Hope. Is hope just a hallmark sentiment? Wishful thinking? Naiveté? Or is it something essential to moving forward in faith and community, particularly in trying times? These are the questions Leah considers, with inspiration from the Prophet Isaiah.

Review Leah's notes here or listen to the teaching below.

Longing for Encouragement

By Liesel (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

By Liesel (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Don't feel much like Decking the Halls right now?  Too in touch with the pain, injustice, and fear this year has triggered? You're in good company. This Advent at Haven we will not paper over pain and lament with Holiday wrapping, but rather we will sit in the discomfort and longing, and call out to God to break into our world again. As we do so, we'll look to the Minor Prophets for inspiration, as they too lived in dark times but yearned and lamented for the Light of God to break through the darkness. 

This first week, we look at Habakkuk, and how he speaks into our longing for encouragement. Listen along or read the notes.