And Mary said,
“My soul magnifies the Lord…
He has brought down the powerful from their thrones,
and lifted up the lowly;
he has filled the hungry with good things,
and sent the rich away empty.
He has helped his servant Israel,
in remembrance of his mercy,
according to the promise he made to our ancestors,
to Abraham and to his descendants forever.”
-Luke 1: 46-47,52-55
Charles Dickens A Christmas Carol is a timeless tale of holiday redemption. Ebeneezer Scrooge is a greedy miser so frozen by loneliness and fear that the warmth of Christmas seems like a threat. If he can be redeemed and experience the peace of God, then so can we. [hear sermon audio]
This week, take some time to go deeper. Use these scriptures and questions to reflect on the meaning of Advent for your own life.
Texts to read:
- Isaiah 9:1-7
- John 14: 1-4, 15-24
Questions to ponder:
- Marley had everything and winds up a restless spirit. Mary had nothing yet her soul magnified the Lord. Reflect on your own soul; where are you on that continuum?
- What holiday tasks or activities cause you anxiety? Are they necessary?
- How are you making space for rest and peace during this busy time?
Do and share:
- Make your own Advent wreath. Take time each night to light the candle(s) for the week and say a prayer with your whole household. If you’d like extra resources, check out: https://www.umcdiscipleship.org/resources/2017-advent-home-worship.
- Get a copy of The Redemption of Scrooge (available in paperback and kindle) and learn along with us.
- This week’s reading is sometimes called the Canticle of Mary or the Magnificat. Check out this great interpretation from artist Jen Nortan and read her reflection on the text and her work: