Advent is an ancient tradition of the church that aims to prepare our hearts for Christmas. The word “advent” comes from the Latin word adventus, which means “coming” or “visit.” In the Advent season, we keep in mind both “advents,” both “visits” of Christ, the first when Christ came to us in Bethlehem and the second when He will come again.
Because Christ has already come to us once and brought light into this world, the white Christ candle has already been lit and will remain lit the entire Advent season. Our Advent theme this year is “Magnificat!” which means to magnify or highly praise the Lord.
After the virgin Mary found out that she was pregnant by the power of the Holy Spirit with Jesus, she visited her cousin Elizabeth who was pregnant with John the Baptist. The Holy Spirit fell on Elizabeth, and she began to prophecy blessing over Mary. In response, Mary began to sing a song to the Lord. Her song began, “My soul magnifies the Lord,” which translated to Latin is Magnificat anima mea Dominum.
This advent season, we’ll walk through Mary’s song, commonly called the Magnificat. Today we light the Candle of Hope and take our Scripture from Luke 1:46-48, And Mary said, “My soul magnifies the Lord, 47 and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, 48 for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant. For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
When Mary first heard from the angel that she would carry the Son of God in her womb, she stoically responded, “And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word,” (Luke 1:38). But can you imagine the fear and anxiety that probably rose in her heart and mind as her body began to change and Jesus began to grow in her womb? I’m sure she wondered what it would mean for her life.
But here, Mary has fully embraced her role in God’s amazing plan. She began to sing and praise the Lord for the grace He had shown her and the blessing He had given her. He had given her hope!
Although our role in God’s plan isn’t Mary role, it is nevertheless important and blessed. We like Mary have every reason the rejoice in the hope of God.
And so we light the Candle of Hope. This Christmas season, may we rejoice in the hope of God and magnify the Lord. From our family to yoursMerry Christmas! And praise the Lord
(Light the 1st purple candle)