Devotional Blog - Advent 2016
PVUMC’s 2016 Advent Blog
Advent Daily Devotional
Beginning December 1, we will offer daily devotions during Advent. To receive daily posts, enter your name and email address in the form at the right. To read the devotionals on the blog, click on the post headline in the section below to read the devotional for the day (you may also want to bookmark this page for easy reference). We invite you to share these devotionals with your friends via tweets, email and on your Facebook page. Use the buttons on the left side of the page to easily share. We also invite you to leave comments, especially if there’s a question at the end of the blog post. We hope this will be a way to share our personal Advent experiences and invite others to do the same.
PVUMC’s church-wide Advent study for 2016 is Sent: Delivering the Gift of Hope at Christmas, by Jorge Acevedo with Jacob Armstrong, Rachel Billups, Justin LaRose and Lancecia Rouse. The small paperback book is available for purchase at the church for $10. Stop by the church office during office hours, 8 am-5 pm, Monday-Friday to purchase a copy. Books may also be available through class leaders. See the list below for the list of classes who plan to follow the study this Advent.
You may also purchase the book online by using “GIVE NOW” at our website. Choose “Other” from the drop-down menu, and type “Advent book” in the Comments section. Show your email receipt to the front office as proof of purchase.
The book has five chapters, and each includes a story by the individual authors. There’s also a DVD component, which will be used as part of the group studies.
Our clergy will preach on the chapters throughout the season of Advent, November 27-December 24, 2016, as part of the worship series: Sent: The Gift of Hope and Christmas.
You are invited to join an Advent study group. Classes are listed on the website calendar and many are listed below, with meeting times and dates.
Weekly Advent Study Classes
SPIRIT Sunday School
Leaders: Tawn Watkins and
Sundays, beginning 11/20
9:30 am, Fireside Room, F8
Wesley Sunday School
Leader: Kent Heltne
Sundays, beginning 11/20
11 am, Church Library, G2
New Testament Bible Study
Leader: Dave Lex
Sundays, beginning 11/20
11 am, H4
Mustard Seed Bible Study
Leaders: Sara Bollman and
Mondays, beginning 11/14
9 am, Fireside Room, F8
Caring Bible Study
Leader: Pam Poley
Tuesdays, beginning 11/15
10:30 am, Parlor, A2
Pastor’s Bible Study
Leader: Pastor Dave Summers
Wednesdays, beginning 11/9
10:30 am, Fireside Room, F8
Leader: Rayme Ellett
Wednesdays, beginning 11/2
4:30 pm, Church Library, G2
Growing Together in Our Walk
Leader: Kim Summers
Wednesdays, beginning 11/9
6 pm, Fireside Room, F8
Leader: Rev. Eve Williams
Wednesdays, beginning 11/30
6 pm, H5
Men’s Breakfast Bible Study
Leader: Jon Hearn
Thursdays, beginning 11/17
7 am, F5/6
Leaders: JP and Jenn Coughlin
Thursdays, beginning 12/1
6 pm, The Paradise Perk
Brown Baggers Bible Study
Leader: Dave Hepburn
Fridays, beginning 11/18
12 pm, Church Library, G2
Pastor Andrea’s story about the missing baby Jesus makes us wonder how we can miss him so easily, not just at Christmas, but throughout the year.
Be God’s love in action for someone this Christmas, as Jesus calls you to love your neighbor. One of the hopes of Christmas is that we find common ground, learn to love our neighbors as ourselves, and rejoice in Emmanuel – God with us.
This popular tale, true or not, is heart-warming and gives us hope in this season of Advent. Despite the storms of life, God is always present and working in and through us. Read More.
A song by Leonard Cohen, Come Healilng, invites us to embrace the hope of Christmas to find healing for our souls. Read more and watch/listen to the video.
What was Jesus sent for? To fulfill your deepest longings and expectations? What Christmas longings do you have, and can you help fill a longing for someone else? Where are you being sent this Christmas?
Pastor Andrea shares a story about how she patched a roof on a rainy Christmas Eve. The glow of Christmas candlelight offers comfort, even in a downpour.
Pastor Dave’s story shares a story about an “Angel Tree,” which gave hope to children and others at Christmas. Where are you delivering hope this Christmas?
Pentatonix offers an a cappella version of “Angels We Have Heard on High.” Enjoy and think about angels and the hope they bring, especially at Christmas. How can you be an angel to someone else?
Everyone has a Christmas story to tell. What’s yours? Find your joy this Christmas; listen to Pentatonix’ version of “Joy to the World,” and come to our Christmas Eve and/or Christmas Day services as we worship the newborn king, Jesus.
Sally is on board a Mercy Ships medical unit, using her skills as a pediatric surgical use on a “mission of mercy.” As Christmas gets closer, she’s reminded of the joy we have even in the most trying circumstances because we are loved and cared for by others and by God.
Bridget remembers caroling as a child in her midwestern neighborhood. Even the snow and wind couldn’t deter her, her sisters and their friends from bringing Christmas joy to their neighbors. Audrey’s Angels, one of the missions PVUMC supports, continues to bring cheer to older adults at Christmas and throughout the year.
Doug’s childhood on a farm in Minnesota was filled with hard work and camaraderie. Neighbors helped neighbors. And it was good to give, as well as receive. Read more.
Family is more than flesh and blood. Family are people who you spend the holidays with, who you confide in, and who you trust. Pam’s story describes how we create our own families and traditions, supporting and loving each other, no matter what.
Monica’s “Caukie” made Christmas special for her every year when she opened her grandma’s gift, even though Monica knew what to expect.
Sometimes we face circumstances that our beyond our control. Knowing that God is in charge helps us feel like there is a greater power at work in the world, and leaves us feeling more at peace. Trust God and pray continuously. God can handle all things – big and small.
Cindy’s story talks about how her experience during a Christmas Eve candlelighting was an “ah-ha” moment. Read more.
Writing and sharing stories brings families and friends closer together. Cheryl writes about how the tradition of sharing stories began and has grown in her own family.
Mary’s dad, who she says “wasn’t religious at all,” showed a true Christian spirit when he served Christmas dinner at the Elks Club every year. All were welcome to come to the table.
Christmas love is what we should be sharing, so we can all be happy or “merry.” Read what Maynard has to say about this sentiment.
Remembering those we love who have passed away is especially poignant during the holidays. Kathy shares how special her last Christmas with her father was, and she reminds us that the spirit of Christmas, shown by God’s love and grace in Jesus, remains steadfast, despite our loss and grief.
For those of us who have experienced snow as a child in the city, Rick’s story brings the joy and peace of a snow that makes cars impossible in the city. And, for him, a rare moment to spend with his dad who might otherwise have been busy if the streets had been clear.
We have a need to give, to pay it forward. God gives us opportunities to give, and when we embrace them, we find that surprising things happen to the givers as well as to the recipients. Deliver the gift of hope and be God’s love in action.
Heather’s story is nothing short of miraculous. “I knew all along I would beat this cancer,” says Heather. Having a positive attitude and believing that God would cure her made all the difference. Read More.