Pastor Dan
December 2017

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I saw the seven day forecast for Tucson last night. There wasn't a day in the 70's in that forecast and it looks like Tucson will be the warmest spot in the nation for two days in a row. I also saw, in the newscast Fall foliage, snow and cold weather as it appears to be winter in many parts of the nation. As I write this, it is the latter half of November and I still am using the AC unit in the window to cool down the laundry room. To be honest, I am struggling to grasp that this is the Advent/Christmas time of year. Though I am ever mindful that the Advent/Christmas mindset has nothing to do with weather, but some hot cocoa on a brisk evening can go a long way toward setting a holiday mood. I'm not asking for snow, but a sniff of Fall would be nice.

Speaking of snow, I have learned that many people spend time watching the Hallmark Channel this time of year for its Christmas shows and movies. If you are one who watches, you may have noticed, in many of the movies, that just at that "moving" moment of the movie, the moment when love is experienced in heart changing ways for someone or for many, it begins to snow. When it begins to snow in a Hallmark Christmas movie, love has come to dwell in the hearts and souls of those who need it most in a new and life changing way. Pastor Craig has informed me that "the snow moment" happens exactly three-quarters into the movie. There is a lot of ups and downs, twists and turns, joy and sorrow that builds up to the "snow moment." The "snow moment" is pretty much meaningless if you don't see the first three-quarters of the show.

I do pray that all of us take time this Advent season to prepare our hearts for that incredible "snow moment" of God Almighty in the birth of the Christ. I pray that we find moments to reflect upon all of that which has happened to the relationship between God and His people; the ups and the downs, the entering into the promised land to only worship idols, to the beauty of the temple and the praise offered to the destruction of that temple as sin corrupted all that we as humans take as our own. The Almighty Lord exhausted every means by sending prophets and leaders to turn hearts back to God so that all hearts may experience the "snow moment" with our loving and gracious God. God loves us beyond measure and God wants us to know and experience that love. Everything God tried, seemingly failed to penetrate our heads of mortar and our hearts of stone. This is part of the build up to God's "snow moment" which we celebrate this time of year.

And just at the right moment, God does something that many refuse to believe. God comes to make the relationship right by entering our world and our lives as a newborn infant born in the harshest of conditions. Though there are many throughout history and many among us who think this story to be rubbish, we have come to experience the Almighty's grace and love for us through this One called Jesus. Jesus, God's eternal "snow moment" in our lives and in the world.

I pray you and all your loved ones have safe travels, joyous moments and a very Blessed Advent and Christmas season.

In Christ's love and service, Pastor Dan

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