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For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6

Once again the season of Advent, a time of preparation, is upon us. It’s the annual barrage of decorating, shopping, cooking and card-sending. We often feel obligated to somehow fit everything into a schedule that’s already full of “normal” obligations. Besides the busyness of the season there’s the added pressure to buy that special something for that special someone that already has all the special stuff they could imagine. I don’t want to sound like Ebeneezer Scrooge, but it seems to me that somehow the “Holiday” season has lost its way in this world of lights, glitter, Hollywood magic, Hallmark movies, and harried merrymakers.

Advent is a time of preparation; for what are we preparing?

In the heart of a Christian there’s really only one thing truly needed. There’s only one thing that requires a lifetime of preparation. There’s only one thing that MUST fit into our schedule – everything else, including all of our Christmas traditions, becomes secondary. The ONE THING is a personal relationship with the the Wonderful Counselor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace: Jesus, the Son of God.

My prayer is that you discover anew, perhaps for the first time, the heart of the season: Jesus the Christ. May you have opportunities to gather with friends and family, exchange a few gifts, enjoy some good meals and experience the traditional joys of the Holidays. But more importantly, take some time to ponder God’s amazing gift of love, a gift given to and for you. That gift came in the gentleness of baby, born in the most humble of circumstances. But that gift is the Hope of redemption, the Way of salvation, the Joy of eternal life and Peace with God.

May you have a very merry Christmas!

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Baden United Methodist Church
State & Dippold Streets
Baden, PA 15005