When They Prayed
FROM THE BISHOP DAVID GRAVES   I chose the theme of our 2023 Annual Conference session, “When They Prayed,” based on Acts 4:31: “And when they had prayed, the place in which they ...
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Are We There Yet?

December 15, 2014


Have you ever experienced a long car ride with small children? If so, you may be familiar with the oft-repeated question hurled from the back seat – “Are we there yet?” Whether excited, upset or just bored, the question seems to be repeated many times before the final destination is reached.

Advent is the season in which we prepare for the coming of Christ. A common understanding describes Advent as proclamation of Christ’s anticipated coming again, as well as the coming of Christ as the infant Savior.

We have not reached Christmas. We are still waiting. We have yet to receive the second coming of Christ. We are still waiting. The depth of two theologians and simplicity of an ancient Hebrew song help us in the midst of waiting to focus on our faith and hope.

Through all the advents of our life that we celebrate goes the longing for the final Advent, where it says: “Behold, I make all things new” (Rev. 21:5). Advent is a time of waiting. Our whole life, however, is Advent – that is, a time of waiting for the ultimate, for the time when there will be a new heaven and a new earth, when all people are brothers and sisters and one rejoices in the words of the angels: “On earth peace to those on whom God’s favor rests.” Learn to wait because he has promised to come. - Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Every day is judgment day, and we through our deeds and words, our silence and speech, are constantly writing in the book of life. - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

I believe with all my belief in the coming of the messiah
And even if there is a delay, I believe.
- Hebrew song

May we take time away from the background noise of the Christmas season and reflect upon our relationship with God and others. How can we live more fully into the season of Advent? What will be different in our lives personally and within our communities of faith because we have gone through the season of Advent? How will we be challenged to pursue matters of justice and peace?

Perhaps we would all do well to slow down and reflect upon this Advent season. “Are we there yet?”

O Come, O Come Emmanuel.

Rev. Denise Walton serves as the Assistant to the Bishop for Connectional Ministries. Contact her at denise@sgaumc.org.

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