As Lent begins and along with it a series of noon time talks by Bishop Bill Hockin and Dr. Barry Craig, I am listening to their series of talks from this past Advent. With their talks being at noon, my parents are able to attend and I am not. So here I am listening to talks about Advent (a season of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of Christmas) during the second week of Lent (a season of fasting and reflection and repentance between Ash Wednesday and Easter). The series is called Shopping for a Messiah: The Eternal Search for a Better Life and is available at billhockin.ca and I highly recommend you check them out at billhockin.ca. The first week’s topic is A Messiah Who Takes You Home to Dinner, the second is A Messiah Who Loves the Loser, the third A Messiah Who Switches the Price Tags, and finally there is a reflection on A Messiah Who Turns the Tables on Religion.
I realize that it sounds rather odd to be listening to Advent reflections while reading Lenten devotions. The thing is that Advent and Lent are not as different as they may seem. “Jesus is the reason for both seasons!”
“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.” John 3:16 Jesus is the Messiah whose coming we anticipate during Advent, upon whose life and ministry we reflect during Lent, and who ultimately took all our sin on his shoulders through his death on the cross and rising at Easter.