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The Church’s invitation in Advent is twofold: to remember Christ’s glorious coming into the world and to anticipate his mysterious return one day.
We remember the story of when God himself came and took residence among us. Yet he came not as many then expected, and still, if we’re honest, not as many of us now would have necessarily liked him to. He came not as a great warrior or mighty king. Nor did he come with power and order to suddenly deliver his people from the hands of their oppressors. This God came humble and quiet. He came a helpless baby, like each and every one of us. He came among the lowly, the marginalized. Almost hidden, lying in a manger. Enfleshed holiness that would grow as a son, in a particular culture, steeped in Judiasm, and when ready would set the greatest Kingdom the world could know into motion through miracles, teachings, and upside down ethics – but more so through a cross, a death, a resurrection.
This Advent, may the longing lead you – and all of us – home to him.
O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel
That mourns in lonely exile here,
Until the Son of God appear!
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to you, O Israel!