Mary meets Elizabeth

A leap of joy from a foetal boy,
his mother stirred to prophetic word
for the mother of Jesus had come,
(the Son of God enclosed in her womb).

Mary sang of God’s praise
and redeeming ways,
of her poor position,
and sinful condition,
of blessed experience,
God’s touch and sustenance
as taught in his Word,
and by Gabriel revealed;

those who approach him in reverent fear
find his rescuing mercy is near
but those who ignore, no regard for his name
are scattered, judged, empty, and end up in shame;
sang of covenant mercy to Abraham’s seed,
Messiah is coming to meet all our need.

“… and blessed is the child you will bear” … “My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour, for he has been mindful of the humble estate of his servant …  His mercy extends to those who fear him … he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts. … remembering to be merciful to Abraham and his descendants for ever, even as he said to our fathers. “ Luke 1:39-56

Noel, Good News!

In the past God spoke to our fore-fathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heri of all things, and through whom he made the universe. Hebrews 1:1,2

There is a mighty Sovereign God
transcendent, yet concerned
for men and women, boys and girls,
revealing all we’ve learned
by teaching through the prophets down
the years to Is-ra-el,
and finally he sent his Son
– Jesus – good news, No-el.

DCM eg  ‘Noël’, tune of ‘He came upon a midnight clear’

Advent Calendar …

notable events/promises leading to the coming/adven

December 1
A promise to Adam that one day a son
would deal with the problem the snake had begun. (Genesis 3:15)

2 When earth got so wicked, God warned of a flood,
provided a refuge: huge ark made from wood.  (Hebrews 11:7) (Genesis 6:12-14,22)

3 From Abram’s descendant, the whole of the world
could find full salvation, foretold and unfurled. (Genesis 12:3; 18:18,19)

4    Joseph they spurned, raised by God as a saviour –
preparing for time of great famine and hunger.        (Acts 7:9-16)

5 Moses appointed to lead them from slavery,
back to the land, to be taught, and be ready …        (Exodus 3:7-10)

6 King David was promised a Son, King for ever;
the Lord who would suffer, the promised Messiah.   (Acts2:30,31)

7 A temple to teach of his glory was built,
remind of his presence, his care, and their guilt … (Exodus 25:8)

8 Each sacrifice, offering was pointing ahead
to the need for an adequate Saviour instead.       (Hebrews 9:13,14; Isaiah 53:5,6)

9 Some of the kings helped the people to heed
God’s precepts, but many oppressed, led in greed.

10 Wonderful Counsellor, Teacher Supreme,
the Prince bringing peace, will arrive to redeem …       (Isaiah 9:6; Acts 7:37)

11 … to take our transgression, the punishment bear
that we may his joy and his fellowship share.            (Isaiah 53)

12 From Bethlehem, city of David would come
the Ruler eternal, that king’s greater Son.       (Micah 5:2 quoted in Matthew 2:6 by the chief priests to Herod when the wise men were enquiring where they should look for the newborn king)

13 The people and kings more and more turned away –
were warned they’d be conquered and exiled one day …    (Jeremiah 25:4-11)

14 … for 70 years they’d be captives out there –
many repented, turned back with true prayer.             (Daniel 9:2,3,19 Ezra 1:1,2-4)

15 Restored to their land, but struggling in weakness,
awaiting the One who’ll transform their distress.          (Jeremiah 31:31-34 Zechariah 13:1 Malachi 4:2)

16 Like Elijah of old, a prophet would come –
to call for repentance – they’d see the Christ soon.    (Malachi 3:1)

17 Zechariah was told Elizabeth would bear
a son, and this John would baptise and prepare.        (Luke 1:13-17; John 1:6-9)

18 Someone called Simeon, was told, before death
he would see God’s salvation – the Christ come to earth.      (Luke 2:25-35)

19 Amazing the message, and Mary believed –
she’d mother the Saviour – by miracle conceived.             (Luke 1:26-38)

20 Reassurance to Joseph, betrothed to be wed:
do not fear, for the son to be born is from God.             (Matthew 1:18-21)

21 They travelled to Bethlehem, because of the census;
while there, as foretold, Christ was born, come to help us.           (Luke 2:1-7)

22 Shepherds the news from the angel heard –
they went, saw, and told of this wonderful word.               (Luke 2:8-20)

23 Some wise men who noticed a new, special star
the newly-born king sought, travelling far.                  (Matthew 2:1-12)]

24 A nature bigger than the size
of manger where the baby lies
– he soon was seen to be so wise,
then dying on a cross – to save,
procure what everyone should prize:
this grace astounding he supplies
surpasses all that money buys:
one day to him we shall arise.          (John 1:1-5;14)

Sparkling affection

excitements crackle –
brittle glitter;
smiles sparkle –
or affectation fickle?

God’s gift to a world hurt and hard
many can’t fathom, and choose to discard;
but its love that can dazzle, and ours ignite
to brighten our homes more than glitzy delight.

Advent Step 8) Announcement to the Shepherds

Humble shepherds told the news,
by messenger who awed,
with glory of the Lord
shining all around:
good news of greatest joy
a Saviour born, he’s Lord and Christ,
a baby boy
in manger laid.
Wondrous sound:
Glory to God in the highest,
peace, God’s favour can be found.
Then hurredly they made
their way to Bethlehem:
it was as they had heard
– they spread the word
of what they’d seen and learned,
and praised as they returned.
(Luke 2:8-20)

Advent Step 7) Announcement to Joseph

Joseph puzzled,
message sent in dream,
child so specially conceived
by God’s Spirt is to be
Saviour of his people, he
will save them from their sins,
so Joseph was to name him ‘Jesus’
(which means ‘The Lord God saves’)
and as foretold, he’s ‘God with us’,
Immanuel, God now living human life,
and Joseph was to be his earthly father,
and mother Mary, Joseph’s wife.
(Matthew 1:18-25)

Advent Step 4) He will be called…

‘The people walking in darkness have seen a great light … to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called …’ Isaiah 9:2-7 (and Matthew 4:14-16)

Those walking in darkness would see a great light,
Galilee would see the dawning from night,
a righteous Ruler would be born
freeing from oppression,
Wonderful Counsellor, perfect direction,
Mighty God, Sovereign with power
Everlasting Father, caring protection
Prince of Peace, peace in him, and in his kingdom,
eternally, righteously reigning.