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An Advent Reader for Church in the Square

“For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.”

(Luke 2:11)

The Christmas season, …

… if we aren’t mindful, can easily pass us by through the whirlwind of events, traveling, visiting relatives, or spending hours online trying to find the right bargain for the gift you so want to give someone. This devotional is meant to help us pause, ponder, and meditate on God’s Word. It’s purposed to make us look to the Word made flesh, Jesus Christ, in order to not miss the sole meaning of Christmas -- the Messiah has come to rescue a world in need. The Messiah is coming back to complete His plan of restoration.

The great thing about the Scriptures is that they can’t be exhausted. They can’t be overused, and they don’t have an expiration date. Honestly, when we think about Christmas, there’s not something new or innovative to say. The early church father, Augustine of Hippo, when referring to the familiarity of the Christmas story, said, “Listen to what you know, reflect on what you’ve heard, love what you believe, and preach what you love.” Rehearse the Christmas gospel over and over. Use this as a personal devotional, as well as a group and family devotional. In the following pages, you’ll find 5 days for each week (Monday-Friday), and each week leading us closer to the birth of Jesus Christ. For the day your small group meets, use the particular day in your time together. If your small group meets on Sunday, use day 1.

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“THE HOPES AND FEARS OF ALL THE YEARS ARE MET IN THEE TONIGHT”

- PHILLIPS BROOKS, O LITTLE TOWN OF BETHLEHEM

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At the beginning of each week, you’ll find an overview and a song. Use them as a reference point for each day of that particular week. Your small group may want to sing aloud together, or you may just read through the lyrics and let them point you back to God’s Word. As you go through the Daily Rhythm, don’t see it as a checklist to work through in a specific order. Instead, use it as a guide. Each rhythm is interconnected. See how reading Scripture each day shapes your prayer - how you pray for God’s will to be done or intercede on behalf of others. The time answering questions can often cause us to pause and sit in awe and thanksgiving towards Jesus.

Our desire is that this discipline will evoke worship and prayer daily, as we’re invited to read and consider what may be familiar narratives and events of Christmas. Come back to the anchor of God’s enduring faithfulness as it’s shown in our Savior, Jesus Christ. Our prayer is that this helps us see Jesus as more incredible than we believed before and that our appetite for God’s Word increases well beyond Advent and Christmas to every single day of the year.