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O Come, O Come Emmanuel

I think I’ve just figured out why I love Advent more than I love Christmas.

Christmas is great, of course, especially when my eyes are on Jesus, not on shopping malls or home decor. It’s a joyous celebration.

But then it’s over. The tree comes down, the leftovers from Christmas dinner fill the fridge, the truly awful gifts are set aside for next year’s white elephant parties. And a sort of melancholy hits me because . . . well, as glorious as it is that Jesus came in the flesh, He also left this earth again.

That’s where Advent has it all over Christmas. Advent is about anticipating the coming of Christ, and Advent in the larger sense won’t be over until He comes again. There’s no let-down. Advent is where I’ll live every day until He comes.

By the way, listen carefully to the words of “Joy to the World” this year. When Isaac Watts wrote it, he was writing about the second coming of Christ. Knowing that gives me a whole new appreciation for the words.

One more note: Every year, Boar’s Head Tavern opens an Advent blog called “Go to Bethlehem and See.” It’s a beautiful concoction of links and devotions that come from Christians of various stripes. Find it here: http://advent.wordpress.com/

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