Sisters and Brothers,

It is Advent again. A new liturgical year has begun.

Notwithstanding the changes and challenges experienced through twenty-one months of dealing with COVID-19, time moves on. We are moving toward the fulfilment of God’s plan. The Advent Hope, which we hold as Christians, is ever before us.

Even now, God is calling us to greater things, to do and be better than we ever dreamed, to always keep moving towards the very best. We can move confidently into God’s future as we acknowledge God’s hand guiding, providing, protecting and delivering in the past. Yes, we can recall the good in the past for reminders that stimulate hope. Then we anticipate that God will lovingly take us forward in time. For this we ought to cooperate with God’s Spirit.

Knowing that the Lord walks alongside and with us in the present is truly enabling. We recognise that God who has kept us in times past, who is alongside us in present successes and struggles, is the One whom we know in Jesus Christ- the same yesterday, today and forever. This gives us every reason to willingly put our future in God’s hands.

So then, Advent brings past, present and future in an unending scheme of things that are under God’s control. Recalling past good, and celebrating God’s presence in the now, are the bases for our confidence in what is to come.

So, no matter how challenging the present might be, hope is our watchword. And as a people of hope, we must certainly bring hope into situations that would provoke hopelessness in others. Advent is a good time to act decisively in bringing help, hope and heart action that can change sad hearts into thankful ones. Let us do to, with and for others, as much good as we can to show the love of God. Causes will be mentioned in our gatherings. Let us take them seriously. And be as generous as we can with our time, actions and service supported by our prayers. We can trust God to let the very best issue from such offerings. In God is hope and hope is alive!

This, this is the God we adore,
Our faithful, unchangeable Friend whose love is as great as His power
And neither knows measure nor end.
‘Tis Jesus, the first and the last, whose Spirit shall guide is safe home.
We’ll praise Him for all that is past,
And trust Him for all that’s to come.
Joseph Hart, 1712-69, VIP#29

Yours in God’s service
Joan Delsol Meade