We base our life around the rhythm of a week - 6 days, 1 day, 6 days, 1 day. That pattern gets pulled out more broadly into seasons. Just like we have seasons of fall, winter, spring, summer, our life following Jesus benefits from rhythms and seasons. Seasons of waiting and hope, seasons of reflection and repentance, seasons of celebration. The Christian life isn’t flat, and only one emotion - following Jesus encompasses all of life and the whole range of our experience. Jesus is with us while we’re waiting with hope, Jesus is with us while we’re grieving, Jesus is with us while we’re celebrating. Our life together as followers of Jesus must reflect that range of experiences.

Advent is one of the seasons observed by the church since the 4th century. The word “Advent” comes from the Latin word “adventus,” meaning “the one who is on his way.” Each Sunday of Advent is meant to focus our attention on the reality of Jesus coming into our world. We are called to join in with waiting, as Christians have done all over the world.

As we wait in Advent, we remember and anticipate. We remember what was prophesied, promised, and fulfilled in Jesus, and we anticipate his return when he will set everything right. As pastor and author Rich Villodas recently said, “The good news about Advent is not that we are faithful in our waiting but that God is faithful in his coming.”

You can use these Advent Guides by yourself, with your family or roommates, or with your community.

Week 1: Love
Week 2: Joy
Week 3: Peace
Week 4: Hope