Today's Lectionary Text
Comfort, O comfort my people,
A voice cries out:
Comfort. This Advent I suspect that what we all want as much as anything is to find some comfort for our hurting hearts. There may be people out there who have come through this year totally unscathed by events, but no one I know has escaped completely some discomfort this year. COVID-19 has taken so many lives, jobs, businesses. The racial unrest, police violence, and political acrimony of the summer and fall disturbed our hearts and souls. Deepening poverty has come to rest on both the usual victims and people who have never before experienced a lack of wealth. This holiday season is seeing millions more families than ever seeking food for their tables. It is not a comfortable time. And in our discomfort, we seek comfort.
Jerusalem had long been in a time of discomfort when the prophet we call Isaiah proclaimed that her time of discomfort was coming to an end. God was ready to give comfort to Jerusalem and to forgive her sins. A new day was coming when the way would be made smooth and even.
I always find hope in these words of the prophet. The idea that God offers comfort – even to those who have sinned – is at the heart of the Christmas story and of our preparation for Christmas during Advent. There is comfort for us – even in a year when we are most uncomfortable. Comfort comes in the knowledge that Jesus is coming. He comes brining the love of God the Creator into the cold, uncomfortable void that our hearts can become when we allow the things of this world to intrude too deeply. He comes showing us that caring about others and putting their needs ahead of our wants can bring comfort and healing and hope.
--Rev. Robbie Fall, retired Elder
Prayer for Reflection
May each of us find comfort in the message of God’s love throughout this holy season. Amen.
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