Sunday marked the beginning of the Advent Season of the Church Year. It is a period of waiting. This consists of symbolically waiting with the past prophets, patriarchs, kings, and ordinary guys and gals for the first arrival of the waited Christ. We also eagerly await the second coming of our Lord in glory.
Since Advent lasts from now until Christmas, this leaves some of us in a quandary. What do we do when our society begins to celebrate Christmas during our Advent season? We are in a time of waiting and penitence when our culture is going full-bore materialistic. I usually recommend balance. I am not going to refuse to go to Christmas parties or look at lights, but I will observe Advent in the fullest way possible, and celebrate Christmas the most fully from December 24th until Winter Ordinary Time begins. Robb, a Lutheran pastor who runs the Lutherpunk blog, has a few helpful suggestions for keeping the balance in his post called Jumping the Gun.