Advent Reflections: Love and Christ


This cross is on the back wall of our choir loft.  It was lovingly hand crafted by Mr. Leo Carlton, a longtime member of the church.  I can’t even imagine the time and care it took to make such a magnificent work of art; and act of worship.

This past Sunday I had the honor of conducting our chancel choir in our Christmas cantata: “Let Earth Receive Her King.”  What a wonderful joy. Together, as we made beautiful music for the glory of God, I stood in front of this cross. 

During rehearsal, the day before, the Holy Spirit stirred something in my heart: “You are conducting at the foot of the cross.”  After pondering that statement for a bit, the truth of it seeped into my very core.  My directing the choir is an act of worship.  Just like Mr. Leo’s cross, my musical gifts have been crafted, shaped, and tempered over many years, and I have surrendered them to the cross – to be used as the Lord sees fit.

As I reflect on the candle lighting from yesterday, Love, and the one coming on Christmas Eve, the Christ Candle, I am awestruck.  The God of the Universe, whose spirit hovered over the depths and created life with the breath of His words, desperately wanted a relationship with His creation.  And even when His creation rejected Him – He made a way for us to return to Him through the birth, death, and resurrection of His own son. 

His Own Son.

  O what wondrous love is this, oh my soul!
As we celebrate the season, remember the love. The love of a Father, who prepared a gift for


at the manger in His Son who is Savior and Redeemer to all who would receive Him, and unwrapped that gift at the cross.  What gifts can we prepare at the manger, and offer at the cross?

Dear Heavenly Father,

We are so thankful for all that You’ve given to us, through Your Son, Jesus, especially the opportunity for new life in You.  Be with us through the Advent season and into the new year.  Speak to our hearts, and draw us close to You.  Fill us with Your Spirit so that we have the strength to follow You wherever You lead us.  Amen.