This Weekend at Hope:
 Countdown to Christmas | Coming Soon! | Isaiah 7:13-14
Hello Hope Des Moines!
 
When's the last time you heard anyone say that they enjoy waiting... for anything? A long time ago, or actually...never! Whether it's a stop light, a line at the grocery store, or Christmas day, the reality is, we live in a culture of immediacy - of wanting things NOW, how we want them, when we want them. E-mail and texts on our cell phones, music and movies "on-demand," the list goes on and on.
 
And then along comes Advent. This season of the church year that celebrates the four weeks leading up to the birth of our Savior on Christmas. Advent comes from the Latin
adventus, which means "coming." Years before Jesus came, waiting for the coming of Christ was much longer than four weeks.

It was literally centuries of longing, of patience, of prayer by God's people. Which is in turn the spirit of the season of Advent for us today. Advent calls us to slow down, to stop, to learn to wait in joyful anticipation of Jesus coming as a baby, but also coming again in the last day.

Slow down. Stop. Learn to wait. Very counter-cultural. Which makes Advent more relevant than ever. Why? Because waiting, hoping, longing - they create time and space in our lives to listen, to build our character, and most importantly - to hear God's voice.

My challenge for you this Advent season - slow down and prepare your heart for Christmas. Maybe it's starting an Advent devotional for you or your family. Maybe it's taking a few minutes each day for extra prayer. Maybe it's making weekly worship a priority above all else each weekend this month. Maybe it's getting involved with our
Joy to the City outreach, supplying gifts for families in need over the next few weeks. You can pick up an envelope this weekend!

Speaking of worship, this is a weekend you won't want to miss at Hope Des Moines! We'll celebrate Holy Communion. I'm excited to preach on the meaning of Advent and what we can learn from waiting on God, and finally, I'll be announcing the awesome results of our Building Hope Together campaign from November. Spoiler alert: You're an incredibly generous church!

Bring your Bible and a friend who doesn't have a church home, and we'll see you this Saturday or Sunday!

Jon

P.S. It's never too late to start thinking about who you'll invite to Christmas Eve services! We've made sure there's plenty of room this year with services Dec. 22 and 23 at Hope Des Moines (for those traveling during Christmas), or Dec. 24 with three services and all Hope campuses at Wells Fargo Arena! Mark your calendars to "worship one" and "serve one!" All in the information is HERE.

Joy to the City
Now through Dec. 17

Support local families in our neighborhood! On Sundays, stop by the Joy to the City Christmas tree. Take a tag with a family on it and share the joy with them this Christmas season. There are a variety of gift options as well as prayer tags.

>> Learn more 
Children's Christmas Program
Sunday, Dec. 10, 9:15 & 11:00 am

The annual Children's Christmas Program stars the children of HopeKids as they creatively share how to celebrate this joyous season.

>> Learn more 
Christmas Eve Candlelight Services at Hope DSM
Friday, Dec. 22, 5:00 pm*
Saturday, Dec. 23, 5:00 pm
 
Message by Pastor Jon Anenson: "Joy Has Come!" Celebrate our Savior who has been born to us with worship, special music, live art and an inspiring message! *A soup supper will be available following worship on Friday, Dec. 22.

Christmas Eve at Wells Fargo Arena
Sunday, Dec. 24, 11 am, 2:00 & 5:00 pm
 
Join us at Wells Fargo Arena for Christmas Eve services. We'll celebrate the birth of our Savior and Pastor Mike Housholder will share a message called, "Let It Shine!" There will be special music by John Cheatem, aka Jon Mero from The Voice, and live art by William Butler, as well as free parking downtown, reserved wheelchair and elderly seating areas, and lots of great live music. Quality childcare provided for infants and toddlers age 3 & under at all services. Invite everyone to come and experience the joy of God's love this Christmas!

>> Learn more 
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Lutheran Church of Hope Des Moines | 515.282.4481 | info@hopedesmoines.org | hopedesmoines.org