Orbit Dec 2017

Hope, Peace, Joy, Love –

 All there in Christ(Mas)!

This year at Ozzy we’ve taken a slightly different approach to decorating the church as an aid in our spiritual journey towards Christmas!   We wanted to enter a little into the heart of the traditional ‘Advent’ period.    Advent, whilst not based on practice from Scripture, has its roots in hundreds of years of the universal church seeking helpful means for Christians to reflect on the meaning of Jesus’ coming.

It’s a time for a growing sense of anticipation, slowly seeking and sharing in the dawning beauty of His coming… slowly, mind you!…one … thoughtful…step… at a time.    Deciding what are our hopes are for our own life, our family and friends, giving them up to the Lord and anticipating His fulfilling our  yearning for what He -and only He- can give us in  a beautiful, but often chaotic and broken world: peace , joy,  love, mercy, healing.


We all know Advent comes from the Latin word meaning ‘arrival’, ‘coming’, and the  Greek  ‘parousia’= ‘presence’, arrival- especially presence after absence.  Although in our culture there may be much preparation for the ‘coming’ of Christmas (Advent calendars are one of the few things we accept happily in our waiting!) the  concept of ‘watchful waiting’ can be rather alien to us.    We expect it all!… now!     We find it hard to understand why it sometimes can’t happen that way, we might even blame God when it doesn’t.


But the waiting itself is a special, meaningful time… Waiting for a birth always makes us think about how the one coming will change our lives. It’s thrilling, wonderful!    But we recognise that we too need to change our lives to give room for the new blessing that’s coming.    As we journey towards Christmas, I invite you to do all of the above and consider spending time concentrating on each aspect of  what Jesus can offer us-   hope, peace, joy and love.    A plethora of gifts, not just for Christmas but for life!    All that Jesus promised us-“life in all its fulness”(John 10:10) -can really be ours for the taking if we let Jesus into our hearts.


Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord. (Psalm 27:14)

So this year we have fourChristmas trees at Ozzy symbolising these uplifting Advent themes.     Each week  we will add decorations to one of the trees, (starting with hope) praying into our own and the worlds’ situations.    We encourage you each week to think of short prayers to add to each tree -which we will do during Sunday services.    Pray and ask guidance for what your hopes should be for yourself and the world.


But whatever your circumstances, whatever difficulties- or indeed joys!- you may have this Christmas, know that they can be shared with your church family.     Because of Jesus you can now be adopted into God’s family!    A warm welcome and burgeoning  celebration awaits you at Ozzy Road Church over these next few weeks!    Come!    Enjoy, bring yourself, your gifts and skills, bring your family, your friends- share the wonderful gift of Jesus with everyone!

God bless you in the waiting! God bless you this Christmas!

Warm love in plenty to all at Ozzy Road and our Derby Community

For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given;

And the government will be upon His shoulder.

And His name will be called

Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,

Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Of the increase of His government and peace

There will be no end.

Isaiah 9:6-7a

  “Lord Jesus, master of both the light and the darkness, send Your Holy Spirit upon our preparations for Christmas. We who have so much to do seek quiet spaces to hear Your voice each day.    We who are anxious over many things look forward to Your coming among us.    We who are blessed in so many ways long for the complete joy of Your kingdom.    We whose hearts are heavy seek the joy of Your presence. We are Your people, walking in darkness, yet seeking the light.    To You we say, “Come Lord Jesus!” (Henri J. M. Nouwen)


Eliza Pinder-Ashenden

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