Happy are they who have the God of Jacob for their help!
Whose hope is in the Lord their God.
Who made heaven and earth, the seas and all that is in them;
Who keeps his promise for ever. (Psalm 146:4-5)
On this First Sunday of Advent, we begin a new Church Year.
As you prepare to say the Daily Office, move your bookmark all the way back to the beginning of the lectionary for Year One (BCP 936). You may choose to begin Morning Prayer a little differently, perhaps by using the opening sentences for Advent and the Confession of Sin, and by saying the Jubilate instead of the Venite as the Invitatory Psalm (BCP 82).
Advent is the beginning of the year, and in this season we sound the note of hope which rings through every day, every hour of our lives in Christ.
But God’s power, hour by hour,
Is my temple and my tower.
Peter describes in his second letter the sense of expectation we feel as we wait for the Lord to fulfill his promises, and he encourages us not to lose heart. “The Lord is not slow about his promise, as some think of slowness, but is patient with you, not wanting any to perish, but all to come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9).
We respond to the Lord’s patience with thanksgiving:
We bless you for our creation, preservation,
and all the blessings of this life;
but above all for your immeasurable love
in the redemption of the world by our Lord Jesus Christ;
for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory (BCP 101).
May your practice of the Daily Office this Advent nourish your hope and strengthen your trust in God’s goodness.