Advent Meditation: Sunday, December 2

Psalm 146, 147, 111–113  •  Isaiah 1:1–19  •  Matthew 25:1–13 During our years living in northeastern Pennsylvania, Advent coincided with short days, long nights, and the first flush of winter. In Austin, Advent coincides with sunny days, outdoor events, and moderate temperatures that finally mark the end of lingering heat. The variation in how we … read more

Advent Meditation: Monday, December 3

Psalm 1–4, 7  •  Isaiah 1:10–20  •  Luke 20:1–8 Tell us, by what authority are you doing these things? Who is it who gave you this authority? (Luke 20:2) Miserably, I begin every day with a news briefing. As a parent, a preacher, and a person, I busy myself to know lots of stuff and […]

Advent Meditation: Tuesday, December 4

Psalm 5, 6, 10, 11  •  Isaiah 1:21–31  •  Luke 20:9–18 I will send my beloved son; perhaps they will respect him. (Luke 20:13) What does it mean to respect Jesus? What does it mean to respect what he came to teach us through his life, death, and resurrection? In this time of Advent, as […]

Advent Meditation: Wednesday, December 5

Psalm 119: 1–24; 12, 13, 14  •  Isaiah 2:1–11  •  Luke 20:19–26 Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s. (Luke 20:25) We all know that one. For better or worse, this is one of those oft-quoted Jesus lines. But he’s trying to show us something more than a paradigm of church and state politics. […]

Advent Meditations: Thursday, December 6

Psalm 18:1–50  •  Isaiah 2:12–22  •  Luke 20:27–40 I’ve worried about the death of my loved ones since I was very young. In an early memory, I’m running my fingers along my father’s wooden rosary beads and wondering what would happen to me if he died. I’m not much taller in this memory than my […]

Advent Meditations: Friday, December 7

Psalm 16, 17, 22  •  Isaiah 3:8–15  •  Luke 20:41–21:4 Jesus said: “Beware of the scribes, who like to walk around in long robes, and love to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces, and to have the best seats in the synagogues and places of honor at banquets. They devour widows’ houses and for […]

Advent Meditations: Saturday, December 8

Psalm 20, 21:1–7, 110: 1–5, 116, 117  •  Isaiah 4:2–6  •  Luke 21:5–19 I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict. … They will put some of you to death. … But not a hair of your head will perish. Stand firm, and you […]

Advent Meditations: Sunday, December 9

Psalm 148–150, 114, 115  •  Isaiah 5:1–7  •  Luke 7:28–35 What creates your expectations? Two of today’s readings speak to me of expectation. In Isaiah, a vinedresser methodically prepares an environment for the perfect growing of grapes. Verse 2 carefully provides the step-by-step pains taken to ensure a rich harvest. But the expectation is frustrated […]

Advent Meditations: Monday, December 10

Psalm 25, 9, 15  •  Isaiah 5:8–12, 18–23  •  Luke 21:20–28 Now when these things begin to take place, stand up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near. (Luke 21:28) When it looks like the powers and principalities are holding all the cards, stand up and raise your heads, because your redemption […]

Advent Meditations: Tuesday, December 11

Psalm 26, 28, 36, 39  •  Isaiah 5:13–17, 24–25  •  Luke 21:29–38 My daughter is in another state, attending college. Surely she knows our love for her extends across all distances. But we miss her and can’t wait for her to be home for the holidays so we can love on her even more. As […]