Reading: I Thessalonians 3: 9-13 (Click to read text)
This is a devotional for Advent written for our summer staff several years ago. We share it hear to remind our readers that this year at camp, on Mondays, we are "Living in Advent."
Those Tuesday afternoons—getting everybody ready for the overnight. Gotta make sure the campers have everything they need, “Don’t forget your toothbrush!” “Wear long pants.” "Do we have tarps? Cooking utensils? Matches—don’t forget the matches. Who’s bringing us our Gott?" (There might be goodies on top of the ice!) "Everybody ready? O.K. we’ll swing by the kitchen and pick up our food. Make sure there is enough foil."
It is always good to prepare for journeys, long or short. Whether it’s an overnight camping experience or a week at Chincoteague. It is best to make a list. Check things off. Double check it before you leave. Half-way to the Gap is no time to remember that everybody needs a water bottle.
What sort of preparations do we make for Christmas? Yeah, I know Christmas gifts and all that. Let me ask it another way: What preparations do we make for the Celebration of the Nativity of Our Lord? That makes a difference, doesn’t it? I think it does.
St. Paul in his thanksgiving for his friends at Thessalonica talks about relationships, abounding in love, strengthening hearts in holiness and becoming blameless. Not a bad list. I think it is a good thing for us to begin Advent in thanksgiving for all those who have nourished us along the way—including the staff of CML. We love family and friends deeply. Are there new ways for us to abound in love? How might we, as we celebrate Christ’s presence among us, work to be more holy and even reach to achieve blamelessness? That’s quite a stretch, don’t you think? --Jim Bricker, Chaplain to the Camp Mount Luther Staff
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