Fulfilling the Promise

The season of Advent can help you and me to do two related things: first it can help us to think, in concrete ways, about our future… both our personal futures and our communities’ futures. Secondly, it reminds us to have a sense of history. Not only do you and I receive a family and community history that has happened before us, but we look forward to the history we are in the process of creating.

The St. Mark’s Advent theme is Fulfilling the Promise. The writer of the Gospel of Luke saw that John the Baptist was part of the way that God was making good on a promise made to earlier generations, through the prophets. John prepared the way by calling on everyone to “take stock” of their lives… he called adults to come to the river and be baptized, which was, for diligent Jews, a ritual of cleansing and claiming a new start.

Luke 3:1-6 Common English Bible

In the fifteenth year of the rule of the emperor Tiberius—when Pontius Pilate was governor over Judea and Herod was ruler over Galilee, his brother Philip was ruler over Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias was ruler over Abilene, during the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas—God’s word came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness. John went throughout the region of the Jordan River, calling for people to be baptized to show that they were changing their hearts and lives and wanted God to forgive their sins. This is just as it was written in the scroll of the words of Isaiah the prophet,

A voice crying out in the wilderness:

    “Prepare the way for the Lord;

        make his paths straight.

Every valley will be filled,

    and every mountain and hill will be leveled.

The crooked will be made straight

    and the rough places made smooth.

All humanity will see God’s salvation.”


How do you see yourself making a new start during this Advent season? How do you see yourself as being a history maker? Whether you like it or not, feel it or not… you are, for better or for worse, making history in your family and in this community. You are part of God’s promise to humanity to make a significant difference in the world. Wow! How is this going to happen?   

During the worship service, the second Advent candle will be lit. It is the Candle of Peace. How can you make peace-making, peace-building a central theme of your future plans?



Prayers please for:

Lois Adamek

Ginny Baldauf

Peggy & Paul Blankenship

Jim & Johanna Brownell

Ken Clarke

Pat & Gordon Close

Vivian Noble

Ligaya Vopata

The family of Linda Kuruhara

The family of Hal Miles

The family of Carol Swanson

Please extend your love and sympathy to the family of long-time member,Ruth Burgess, for whom a memorial service is scheduled for this Saturday, December 8, at 10:00am, in the Sanctuary.