The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.
— John 1:5
The darkness sometimes overwhelms us. World events and family concerns challenge us. In the midst of the worry and the busyness, “One Candle Is Lit.” This December in worship, we are looking at how God’s light becomes meaningful and real, bringing hope, peace and love to us and the whole world.
These devotions have been written by Country Club Christian Church staff, lay leaders and friends for you to use as you prepare for Christmas. A hard copy booklet of these devotions is available in The Well, or you may download a PDF here.
Christmas Green – Carla AdayDecember 21, 2017Poet and Mizzou Professor Scott Cairns reminds me in his poem “Christmas Green”* that Christmas offers us the chance to become new. He describes the birth of the baby Jesus like this: “Just now the earth recalls His stunning visitation. Now the earth and scattered habitants attend to what is ... Read More
Time in the Darkness – Leslie TenjackDecember 21, 2017The seasons in my life that I most associate with waiting were my three pregnancies. On learning that I was expecting my first son, my husband and I felt intense joy and excitement. Our lives were about to change and we were nervous, but we believed we could handle it. ... Read More
Starting When? – Dina Pannabecker EvansDecember 20, 2017The season of Advent always reminds me of my maternity years. When I was pregnant with my first child, I had a quarter-time church job in Lawrence, as I was wrapping up my degree at KU. There were a number of expectant mothers in the congregation at the time, and ... Read More
Chop Wood – Joe WalkerDecember 20, 2017When I was in elementary school we lived for a year in a big old farm house that was heated by a wood stove. That Autumn was spent preparing for the artic blasts we knew would come. We split and stacked wood. We rounded up blankets and quilts. We arranged ... Read More
No One Leaves Here Empty Handed – Lauren WeinholdDecember 19, 2017The day after Thanksgiving, my mom, Scott and I piled in the car on a mission to visit as many antique stores as possible. (We leave the big box stores to braver souls.) We found our way to a new little antique store not too far from home and quickly ... Read More
Fear Not – Mike GravesDecember 18, 2017When the Gospel writers finally got around to putting all those stories about Jesus down on paper (ok, papyrus), only two of them bothered to tell of his birth–Matthew and Luke. And what different versions they tell! There is one thing, however, upon which they agree–every time an angel is ... Read More
Light the Candle – Lara SchoppDecember 14, 2017When you ask your brother about his favorite Christmas memory from your shared childhood, you end up down a rabbit hole of nostalgia. You discover that his memory is way more vivid than yours, with details like the year you got the Cabbage Patch Kid and he got the Knight ... Read More
Into the Light – Teresa WilliamsDecember 13, 2017Eleven months into my husband’s 14-month unemployment, my family was coming undone. My sons grew quiet and retreated. Our marriage was ragged raw. I was scared and angry, especially at God. One evening, I went out onto the dark porch, sprawled flat on the swing, and cradle-rocked myself. Some place ... Read More
A Light to Guide Us – Ryan HolmesDecember 12, 2017When I think about this year’s advent theme, I think of the meaningful comforts of seeing a single light or candle lit as one arrives at their destination. It can be as simple as a lamp in a window or a porch light that establishes you are right where you ... Read More
Waiting – Lesley HoltDecember 10, 2017We were their only grandchildren. My sisters and I were the brightest spots in Mimi’s and PawPaw’s lives. Every Christmas morning, they would rise long before dawn, dress as if they were going to church, and drive over to our house and wait. They waited in their car for us ... Read More
Stars – Joe WalkerDecember 7, 2017I love clear winter nights when I can get away from the city lights and gaze up into the heavens. You know those nights when the stars beyond the stars are so faint they appear as shimmering dust? As a farm boy, I am always reminded of those shepherds in ... Read More
Light in the Darkness – Lindsay HowesDecember 4, 2017As a child it was our family tradition to see the Charles Dickens play, “A Christmas Carol”, EVERY year with our father on the night of Christmas Eve. It was such a special time, we would get dressed up and scramble to leave the house on time. We were excited ... Read More
One Voice – J. J. JonesDecember 4, 2017During high school, I was part of a choir that performed One Voice. Like many, music causes me to picture certain imagery or causes emotions to swell within me. I can’t explain why, but every time we sang – Just once voice, Singing in the darkness. All it takes is ... Read More
The Best Christmas – Carla AdayDecember 4, 2017The best Christmas was also the worst Christmas. I was nine and half months pregnant and expecting Connor’s arrival on Dec 26. Wringing my hands about all that still needed to happen before Christmas and childbirth, my husband encouraged me to sit down and write my Sunday sermon. “If you ... Read More
Visit of the Magi -George GordonDecember 3, 2017Most commentators agree that the Gospel of Matthew seems to intend to address audiences that are mostly or solely Jewish, perhaps because he has the least association with non-Jewish people than any of the other Gospel writers or he wanted to confront the Jews who had rejected him as a tax collector. In his Gospel there are many hidden motifs drawn from the Hebrew Scriptures. Let’s take a look at the “Visit of the Magi” in Matt. 2:1-12. Magi were wise men and the East was the ancient source of wisdom, even prior to the Hebrew and Greek Cultures.
Come, Lord Jesus – Mike GravesNovember 30, 2017I have always found the timing of Advent confusing. I’m not referring to how shoppers and kids count down the days to Santa’s arrival, while the church calls it Advent, and not Christmas until December 25. I can live with that sort of confusion since as Christians we all live what one scholar calls hyphenated lives, living in the world of God’s doing and society’s too. I get that.