"Happy New Year!" This is how I intend to greet my parishioners on Sunday morning. I shall then watch them look at me quizzically while they wonder if I had just a little too much wine on Thanksgiving.
I love the first Sunday of Advent. I love purple, I love the wonder and the waiting, I love exchanging the "Year B" books on my desk for the "Year C" ones. My congregation? Not so much. They want to dive headlong into Christmas. (Okay, not all of them, but many, and they are vocal.)
I often find myself in the role of cheerleader on the first Sunday of Advent, trying to convince the congregation that this year, Advent will be Magical! It'll be so cool, you'll want it to last longer.
So once agan this year I'm stuck trying to preach Advent 1 in a way that doesn't sound apologetic, as in , "Sorry for everybody who showed up hoping to hear 'O Come All Ye Faithful'. Let's sing a rousing chorus of 'Comfort, Comfort Ye My People' instead. One more Sunday of this, and you get to see the cute little kiddos do their Christmas pageant, I promise."
The Lukan lection this week seems to paint a picure of expectation. I believe my best chances lie therein.
How about you this week?