Advent - noun - from the Latin adventus meaning
1. a coming into place, view, or being; arrival: the advent of the holiday season.
2. ( usually initial capital letter ) the coming of Christ into the world.
3. ( initial capital letter ) the period beginning four Sundays before Christmas, observed in commemoration of the coming of Christ into the world.
4. ( usually initial capital letter ) Second Coming.
There's been a lot of coming and arriving lately for our family. My sister came last week from Australia with her two youngest boys. Last night her husband and daughter arrived. Next week my other sister will be coming in, then two other nephews.
At church/work last weekend four identical Christmas concerts arrived along with a Senior Luncheon for 300 that my parents organized. This week (which is almost half over) will bring the arrival of a Live Nativity production - for which my family makes up almost 1/3 the cast - two Christmas parties, two music concerts and a massive birthday party.
Next week my vacation time is coming up.
Much of these activities have been eagerly anticipated. Some have come much sooner than expected.
We've been gathering together with our kids every night to hang characters on our Advent Calendar, taking time to read Scriptures and talk about the anticipation of earlier generations waiting for the promised Messiah who would deliver them.
700 years passed between Isaiah's prophecy of the Christ to come and His arrival.
That's a long time to wait.
We've been singing songs about Emmanuel, which literally means "God with us" and really thinking about what it means to be on this side of the incarnation of the living God.
For me it means, even while I find myself waiting, this time for His Second Coming, there is much to celebrate and marvel at today.