Advent Conspiracy — #ADVENT
I've been reading the Advent Conspiracy book this as we getting ready to engage our students this Sunday with the idea of a taking part in a conspiracy to subvert the culture norm of excess and consumerism and engage instead in God's redemptive love of giving presence and peace instead of just a lot of presents.
I've never read the book but i know the concept and have followed the conversation over the last few years. I love the idea of :: WORSHIP FULLY — SPEND LESS — GIVE MORE — LOVE ALL. I mean this is the heart of Christmas. Pastors for decades have been trying to share the heart of this message and this book and movement help put form and structure to the real Christmas story we all want to participate in.
Here are a few quotes from the intro from the book. They give a good idea of where the authors are trying to go and the conversation they are trying to cultivate. It's a conversation i hope i can engage our students in.
Last night we took a step in the right direction. We went Angel Tree shopping. We gave $20 and then when to Wal-mart and bought gifts for people in need. They have requested some gifts and we were able to give. We were able to enter into a story of giving more, of thinking of others before we think of all the stuff we want. It's a baby step for some and for many of our students they probably don't get it at all. But my hope and prayer is that through acts of service like this, no matter how small, we will begin to engage our students in the work of Christ that not only meets the needs of the needs but also the work of Christ that shows us the think we really need is the person of Christ and without him there is no hope
It's hard not to be cliche and corny when reflecting on Christmas and engaging in Advent... presence not presents, giving not getting, Jesus is the reason for the season, Jesus is the gift not all the junk under your tree... and on and on.
BUT here's the deal. We've came up with all these cliches because we know that something is off and we have attempted to right the ship with catchy phrases. And then instead of living different and forgetting all the language we've just held on to the catchy phrases and lived like they don't really matter.
I don't know the answer and i would be surprised in any of my students take a gift back to give the money to a person in need. Or ask their parents to sponsor a kid in Africa instead of getting them a game system. I don't even know how i will respond to this message and the stuff i'm thinking about.
What i do know is that we have to starting thinking about it. We have to begin to do something different. Or at least i do. Christmas as is... isn't working for me any more.
I want to take part in the conspiracy.
I want to share and participate in a better story.
I want to lead my family and the student i lead in a better way.
What are you doing to participate in the conspiracy?
Grace, peace and schemes