ADVENT: Fourth Sunday and Fourth Week - LOVE

ADVENT: Fourth Sunday and Fourth Week - LOVE

Sunday December 24, 2023


CHRISTMAS Eve is almost upon us. How have you been doing with your ADVENT celebration? Hopefully you have been able to have some quiet moments to draw near to God – and now that this special night in which we celebrate the birth of Jesus is almost here, hopefully you have been able to know and feel His great and eternal love for you.


"The story of Christmas is the story of God's relentless LOVE for us... Because of Bethlehem, I have a Saviour in heaven. Christmas begins what Easter celebrates. The child in the cradle became the King on the cross." (Max Lucado)


In this last week of ADVENT we light a candle to celebrate LOVE.  It was for LOVE that Jesus “who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to His own advantage; rather, He made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness…” (Philippians 2:6,7) It was because of LOVE that “… being found in appearance as a man, He humbled himself by becoming obedient to death – even death on a cross!” (Philippians 2:8) As He Himself said, “Greater LOVE has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” (John 15:13)   And He did this because “… I have LOVED you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.” (Jeremiah 31:3)


Dear friend: in these last days of the ADVENT celebration, and in all the days to come, may you be strengthened “… with power through His Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in LOVE, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the LOVE of Christ, and to know this LOVE that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.” (Ephesians 3:16-19)


Fourth Sunday of ADVENT and CHRISTMAS EVE: December 24 – The Candle of LOVE

Luke 1:57-66

Luke 1:67-80

Isaiah 7:10-14

Isaiah 9:1-11

Matthew 1:18-25

Luke 2:1-21

Matthew 2:1-12


“Eternal God,

this holy night is radiant with the brilliance of your one true light.

May that light illuminate our hearts and shine in our words and deeds.

May the hope, the peace, the joy, and the love

represented by the birth in Bethlehem this night

fill our lives and become part of all that we say and do.

May we share the divine life of your son Jesus Christ,

even as he humbled himself to share our humanity.


(Rev. Richard J. Fairchild)


Tuesday December 25 – CHRISTMAS DAY

Psalm 107:1-3 + 35-38