This coming Sunday is the first Sunday of Advent. The word “advent” means arrival. We are taking the time to look back at the First Advent of Christ while anticipating His Second Advent. In Advent tradition, there are Biblical words assigned to each of the four weeks before Christmas and one word assigned to Christmas Eve/Day. We’ll consider Hope, Faith, Joy, Peace and Love over these next five weeks. Doing this may seem redundant but there is benefit in some forms of redundancy. The intent of the creators of the liturgical church calendar was to keep the main things before us so regularly that we never lose sight of what truly matters in the midst of the details. The flurry has already started and I don’t mean the snow! The activities, the scheduling, the parties and the get-togethers are stacking up. It is very easy to get worn out or fed up with the so called spirit of the season. Advent is more than a personal sentimental remembrance. We are pausing each Sunday to remember the most significant event in human history, the Incarnation of God. Think of it! The Eternal Son was born as a baby, a real human being without diminished deity. Jesus Christ is the God-Man. He models for us what humanity can be and at the same time reveals the disposition of the Father to us. He is the “express image of God’s Person.” Advent traditions are redundancies that matter. There is substance to all of this and eternity is in view. Whatever else you do over these next few weeks leading up to Christmas, make sure that you give your mind over to the great event we are celebrating. It will be good for your soul in more ways than you can imagine. You might want to keep a list—and check it twice!