September 2011

RW 101
Advent/Christmas
Reformed Worship issue cover

Articles in this issue:

  • Christian or not, you can’t help but wonder if the world is about to implode.

    No, this isn’t another Harold Camping-esque attempt at prophecy. It’s just a simple statement of fact. The world as we presently know it will end. This truth is as certain as the birth and resurrection of Christ.

  • While even young children can know the facts of the Christmas story it is another thing altogether to comprehend it.  This series helps all of us explore the reality of Christ’s birth a little further, to see a rough manger, not a soft bed, the king’s crown next to the crown of thorns, to begin to grasp the glory and the peace that he brings.
     

    Week 1: Jesus, Our Good News

    Colossians 1:1-8, 28-29

    Lighting of Advent Candle

  • This service is part of the Advent series “Looking for the Real Jesus.” It could also be used independent of the series. For our Candlelight service, we wanted to make sure that people who may come to only one service a year would hear the whole gospel story from beginning to end. We wanted to make sure they knew why Jesus had to come to earth and why Christmas is so important.

    Ringing of Bells

    Musical Prelude

  • After wrapping up last year’s Advent series at our church, Pastor Dale proposed the idea of using the book of Ruth for our next Advent series. Although my thoughts kept rolling around the question How will he get Advent and Christmas out of the book of Ruth? I didn’t say anything. By July, when it was time to select bulletin covers for Advent, the question was still there.
    I needed to know how to correlate the Advent candle wreath lighting with the sermon theme. What evolved became one of my favorite Christmas series.

  • This article is the second in a series introducing “Worshiping the Triune God,” a working document published following the inaugural meeting of the World Communion of Reformed Churches (WCRC) in June 2010 (see Part 1 in RW 100).

  • Every year Christians celebrate the two great festivals of Christmas and Easter that give meaning to our lives: Christ’s coming to earth in human form and in humility, and Christ’s return to his Father in a glorified human body. This year, Advent begins on November 27 with the Scripture passages in the Revised Common Lectionary for Year B.

  • The following theme, objective, and structure outline is reminiscent of the lesson plans teachers prepare for their classes. As worship planners it would be a great discipline to use similar categories for our planning.

    —JB

  • A seven-year-old friend of mine showed me his sketchbook after the service last Sunday. It was a drawing of one of the electric guitars used by the praise band of our church. He was quite proud of his work, but he was quick to point out that the strings weren’t quite right. They were a little heavy-looking, but it was a very well-drawn picture for a kid his age. Afraid Sam would quit drawing guitars because the first one he drew wasn’t perfect, I told him how in art school you get to draw and redraw the same thing over and over until it feels just right.