The Christian faith emerged in the world as “a way” to live. It was a spirituality before it was a world religion. In the life of Jesus, the early followers of him, saw in his life and teaching the way of faith, hope, and love. In his life, his followers found grace and healing. In his death, his followers found hope. And in his resurrection, was found redemption.

The calendar rules us. When the calendar says it is winter, than it is winter. When it says it is Monday, it is Monday. When it proclaims it is June, school recesses. Whatever the calendar declares, we must accept and abide. This is the inspiration of recognizing the Christian calendar or as some call “the year of our lord.” Instead of months, days, and years, we live our year through the life of our Lord. Every year we: “begin again” with Advent, the conception of Jesus. Throughout the four weeks of Advent, we hear again the dreams of the prophets who foretold the grace and redemption of God through the birth of “a promised one.” This dream endured for hundreds of years before the dream was finally realized when “Mary was found with child.”

It is beautiful and redemptive to mark the year by the life of the Christ. As we listen to the scriptures proclaimed in their season, and we enter the different seasons of Jesus’ life, we realize, as the years go by, the same cycle of conception to resurrection occurs in our own lives, again and again. The story and life of Jesus is also our own story as we experience new beginnings, growing joys and pains, suffering, dying, followed by new beginnings again. The same grace and relationship we recognize between Jesus and “The Father,” can be our own relationship with God.

So I encourage and welcome you to live the seasons of the church in community at St. Andrew. The first Sunday in Advent is December 3. May you be blessed as you choose to walk a different calendar then January to December, choosing instead to walk the year of our Lord, from Advent to Pentecost.