Advent Hope

December 1, 2012

Today’s Reflection

WHEN MARY LEARNS that she will give birth to the Messiah, she sings an aria of freedom. Her song presents no sweet lullaby in anticipation of her baby’s birth but a message of freedom and hope for the homeless, the hungry, the refugee, the abused and misused, the powerless, and the despairing. These words express a vision for a better future: “[God] has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly” (Luke 1:52).

Her song captures the words of hope from Hannah and Miriam and echoes the cry of deliverance from the Exodus, “Let my people go!” Marry passes these words of hope into the world, where Jesus proclaims this theme of deliverance in his inaugural sermon: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor … and to let the oppressed go free” (Luke 4:18). …

Mary’s words of liberation and freedom set the stage for the beginning of a new sense of deliverance and hope for a dark and fearful world. The word hail means to greet with enthusiastic acclaim and welcome. This Advent let us say, “Hail, Mary!”

- John A. Stroman
Singing Mary’s Song

From page 5 of Singing Mary’s Song: An Advent Message of Hope and Deliverance by John A. Stroman. Copyright © 2012 by John A. Stroman. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

What do you hope for in the Advent season? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

“There will be signs in the sun, the moon, and the stars, and on the earth distress among nations confused by the roaring of the sea and the waves.”
Luke 21:25, NRSV

This Week: pray for those who struggle to forgive. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section below.

Did You Know?

It’s not too late to join Upper Room eLearning for this year’s online Advent retreat, Singing Mary’s Song: An Advent Message of Hope and Deliverance. Daily meditations, audio readings, and online small group discussions will take us from December 3 – December 29 (eRetreat classroom opens November 30) all from your computer. Join in anytime from anywhere you have Internet access. Learn more.

Saints, Inc.:

This week we remember Sister Dorothy Kazel (November 12).

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Sponsored by Upper Room Ministries ®. Copyright © 2012, a ministry of GBOD | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

robert moeller December 1, 2012 at 2:45 am

I wish is that this Advent members of my family will have their faith in God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit rekindled and that all who do not know Christ will welcome Him into their hearts.

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Joan December 1, 2012 at 8:44 am

I pray to “prepare” for Christ in my heart and in my life each day.
I pray for openness and availability

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Ven. Rufus akinwale December 5, 2012 at 5:56 am

Failure an individual at chrismas season to appropreate the spirit of forgiveness to whoever has done him or her any wrong, and charting a way for the oppressed to be free will amount to a wasteful celebration.
Let every one of us resolve tbe in the right relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ the Swho will judge the world at His second advent.

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Damon December 22, 2012 at 2:26 am

- Thank you so much for posting this! I’m so sendnig this to my mom. I ask every year to donate the $$ we would spend on each other and give it to a good cause or family in need, but she insists on exchanging presents that we hardly use. I hope this will get the point across.November 15, 2008 8:53 pm

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