Earlier this week my wife, Gabrielle, hung up our Christmas wreath on the front door. This tells me two things: one, Advent has begun and it’s nearly Christmas, and two, we only have one more month left in 2014 before our big journey of 2015 commences; planting Central Vineyard church.
A major theme of Advent is waiting, and waiting is what we have been doing for quite a few months now - we’ve been waiting to start this journey, and we’ve had small glimpses of getting things underway while always knowing that the summer break over Christmas and New Year is a big deal for the average Kiwi, so we best keep the pressure off till it’s out of the way.
This time of waiting has become a bit like a “rolling-start” for us (a way some motor races begin, where the contestants, rather than racing from a complete stand-still, all drive slowly beside each other until the light goes green and then it’s flat-out racing). Several months ago we started to gather a small “engine room” core team, we launched our presence and identity online, last month we had our first gathering with a dozen people in our lounge, and this month it looks like it will be above twenty people. Slowly support is growing, word is spreading and there is something emerging out of what had just been an idea and a sense of God speaking to us.
This Advent we are joining with the global Church in waiting for the coming of Emmanuel, but also, we are waiting for the end of a year of waiting, and the beginning of a year of starting what we have been waiting for.
P.S. To make the most of the Advent journey, I highly recommend these videos being released by 24/7 Prayer: