Prelude – Come, Thou Long‐Expected Jesus ‐ Arr. Thygerson
Is it all sewn up – my life? Is it at this point so predictable, so orderly, so neat, so arranged, so right, that I don’t have time or space for listening for the rustle of angels’ wings or running to stables to see a baby? Could this be what he meant when he said Listen, those who have ear to hear…Look, those who have eyes to see? O God, give me the humbleness of those shepherds who saw in the cold December darkness the Coming of Light, the Advent of Love. ~Ann Weems
Hanging of the Greens – Sharon Overbaugh
Prayer Concerns, Silent Prayer – Pastor Ross
Prayer Song – Away in a Manger ‐ Hymnal #217
Pastoral Prayer, Lord’s Prayer
Lighting of the Advent Candles – Ernie and Sharon Gutierrez
Special Music – Thou Didst Leave Thy Throne ‐ Matthews – Juan Hernandez
Scripture Reading – Luke 1:5‐13, 18‐22 – Sharon Overbaugh
Message – The Other Holy Family ‐ Paster Dave
Luke 1:5-13, 18-22 – The New Revised Standard Version
5 In the days of King Herod of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah, who belonged to the priestly order of Abijah. His wife was a descendant of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth.
6 Both of them were righteous before God, living blamelessly according to all the commandments and regulations of the Lord.
7 But they had no children, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were getting on in years.
8 Once when he was serving as priest before God and his section was on duty,
9 he was chosen by lot, according to the custom of the priesthood, to enter the sanctuary of the Lord and offer incense.
10 Now at the time of the incense offering, the whole assembly of the people was praying outside.
11 Then there appeared to him an angel of the Lord, standing at the right side of the altar of incense.
12 When Zechariah saw him, he was terrified; and fear overwhelmed him.
13 But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zechariah, for your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you will name him John.
18 Zechariah said to the angel, “How will I know that this is so? For I am an old man, and my wife is getting on in years.”
19 The angel replied, “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you and to bring you this good news.
20 But now, because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their time, you will become mute, unable to speak, until the day these things occur.”
21 Meanwhile the people were waiting for Zechariah, and wondered at his delay in the sanctuary.
22 When he did come out, he could not speak to them, and they realized that he had seen a vision in the sanctuary. He kept motioning to them and remained unable to speak.
We learn about the other “holy family”, old Zechariah and Elizabeth. In their later years they receive an unexpected gift, when Elizabeth becomes pregnant and they become the parents of John the Baptist. God comes & speaks to us in unexpected ways in Christmas, stirring faith, helping us to live hope in Christ’s arrival. We learn to celebrate Christ’s birth & share this love in ways that might surprise even us.
How God comes & speaks in unexpected ways in Christmas. God can stir our faith, help us to live the hope of Christ’s arrival, learn to celebrate Christ’s birth and share this love in ways that might surprise even us. Great unexpected moves of God in Christmas: God came into world in unconventional way in human form. In our own panic filled moments, we’re not quite sure what to do but God knows.
We all have moments that makes us go “uh oh!” Tensions & frictions of not knowing what to do & we can panic. But we want to be receptive to how God can lead us, help us, move us through. The unexpected can rattle us, but it doesn’t rattle God.
God knows way approach & engage our faith that is unique to us -it fits just for who we are. God will disrupt our world. Elizabeth & Zechariah’s unexpected son will be John Baptist, a disruptive force in Israel. Coming of Messiah means God can move & shift our lives. God disrupt our world to make God’s ways clear.