My soul magnifies the Lord.

This Advent, we have been on a journey in scripture through space and time. We began by thinking about the signs all around us that reveal God’s work in and through us. We then met John the Baptist, whom the gospel writer urges us to listen as the “voice crying out in the wilderness” to prepare the way for the Lord. We remembered that the message came not to the centers of power or to those who held that power but to a prophet in the wilderness. Next we followed a crowd out into that wilderness, curious about this prophetic message and this man claiming to be a servant of God. We heard John’s message of harsh words for those who hoard power and resources and who ignore the lowly, those he called a “brood of vipers.” To those who were being oppressed then and who are brought low now, however, this world-turning message was both revolutionary and welcome. As we moved through this arc in the gospel of Luke we read from the prophets alongside, each of whom prophesied at a time of great disruption and confusion for the Israelites. All of this, I hope, has worked together to show us that even and especially in times that are confusing, heartbreaking, and difficult, Emmanuel, God-with-us continually advents into our lives and into the world to do new things.  (Continue reading this sermon at

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