The message of Advent is that since the time of the garden, God has been on a rescue mission. The Bible is the Gospel story of God pursuing us. He did not stop after man sinned and was cast out of the garden. He pursued Noah and saved his family. He did not stop with Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, or David. He is faithful and does not stop pursuing you when you become a Lutheran. Even when you daily chose sin and your own idols over him, or when you doubt his faithfulness, God is there calling you by name. He does not stop pursuing you if you are marginal in your faith, or if you hide your sin behind your outward works or disguise an empty heart of worship. Simply, he pursues you because he chose you. These candles can remind us of the covenant God has made with us and the promise of his faithfulness.
THE WREATH: The wreath itself is a circle. It begins with God creating us and loving us. In spite of that love, we choose our own gods and fall away. God pursues us, redeems us and restores us to himself and makes us new creatures. In adoration for all God has done, we worship and adore Christ and raise him above everything else in our lives. Our sin is eclipsed by the work of Christ with him in the center of our lives. Our sin no longer enslaves us; we are free to worship as God intended. Christ rules and reigns victorious.
Romans 8:37:No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.38 For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers,39 nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Go to the source for some interesting history of the Advent wreath.
- 11/26: The Advent Wreath (unitedbyfaith.wordpress.com)
- Advent Reflection on Waiting for Forgiveness by Mark D. Roberts (trinityspeaks.wordpress.com)
- 1st Week Of Advent (berrylaker.blogspot.com)