Phone: 701.636.5701
204 Caledonia Avenue East, Hillsboro, ND

Sr Pastor Joe Johnson 701.430.3787 


Monday, December 21

For the herald’s voice is crying in the desert far and near, calling us to true repentance, since the reign of God is here. Oh, that warning cry obey! Now prepare for God a way. Valleys, rise to greet the Savior; hills, bow down in humble favor.  -                            -ELW #256 V. 2


Advent used to be a season of repentance, kind of like Lent. It was a time to prepare ourselves before the holy Mass of Christ. Christ-mass. Yet, over the years the tone of Advent has changed and, for some congregations, Advent is just Christmas early.

There is something to the “repentance” piece. The “warning cry” we should obey. But I’d rather think of it as taking stock, as being honest with ourselves, as cleaning house so that we are filled with a renewed sense of understanding and joy at the birth of Christ.

For example, our culture is already very materialistic and Christmas is almost the worst time for it! For a baby who was born in a barn and a season that celebrates the birth of a man who had no place to lay his head, we feel obliged to spend thousands of dollars on stuff no one needs. Why? To make others feel loved? So we don’t feel judged? Because it’s just what people do and what is expected? So what? Why?

In Advent the herald’s voice cries for us to take a look at our hearts and evaluate why we do what we do. Why we think and believe what we do. Celebrating Christ in our lives will always go against the culture. It will always beg us to bow down in humble favor to greet our Savior. And we are invited to discover what that looks and feels like in our own lives.

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