Pastor Maggie’s Message, December 2023

Pastor Maggie’s Message, December 2023

God’s Beloved,

Grace and peace to you for this month of December. I know December is a busy month and that it can be a hard month. It can be hard for many reasons: it’s the last month of the year and you may be asking yourself, where did the time go? Holidays can be stressful, lonely, or involve a lot of traveling. It is dark, cold, and the weather is ever changing… Usually not for the better.

And yet, there are many beautiful blessings that December brings. For outdoor enthusiasts (with enough snow) one can go snowshoeing, skiing, sledding, and snowmobiling. There are holiday movies, family traditions, Christmas songs, and decorative lights on display.

And St. John has some beautiful traditions carried on by all of you. Every Sunday, until Christmas Eve, we will light our Advent wreath. A wreath with evergreen boughs, to represent everlasting life in Christ.

Advent is a time to wait with purpose. Waiting for Christ to be born and for Christ to come again, while knowing Christ is with us still. Which reminds me of Psalm 139

Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.”

God is with you in all things, even as we wait for Christ to be born. God is with you when your December days are bright and merry. God is with you when your December days are dark and dreary. God is with you when you have that cup of cocoa, snuggle up on the couch, and watch a Christmas movie (even if it is about Santa). God is with you in all things.

I look forward to Advent with you all, as we wait with excitement, anticipation, and hope—till Christmas Eve. The night I can wish you all a very Merry Christmas.

With Love & Gratitude,

Pastor Maggie Westaby