‘A Light Shining in the Darkness’ - Advent Reflections 2015
1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. [...]
9 The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. 14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
John 1: 1 – 14 (New International Version)
Our motto at Exeter Foodbank, a local Christian charity which provides emergency food for those in crisis, is ‘restoring dignity, reviving hope’. People are referred to us from a wide variety of backgrounds and for many reasons – and yet many common themes emerge. Many feel frustrated by their circumstances - powerless and unheard. Others are lonely, and feel unloved. Some can no longer envisage a better future for themselves. Providing three days’ worth of food can help relieve hunger and stress – but these wider needs are far too great for any organisation to meet alone.
At Advent, we wait expectantly for the coming of one who is able to meet all of those needs, and more. The purpose of Christ‘s coming to this world is to provide hope - the hope that just as He came to us as a little baby, He will come again as king. To have hope is to look forward to the coming of a whole new world, where hunger, poverty, loneliness and injustice have no place and all things will be restored.
This Advent, we invite you to read the reflections below and join with us in prayer for people in our city who are desperately in need of this hope this Christmas.
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