Silence and Other Surprising Invitations of Advent

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9780835811125: Silence and Other Surprising Invitations of Advent
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Usually when we think of the Advent story, Mary, Joseph, and the angel Gabriel come to mind. Okoro approaches Advent a little differently, inviting us to sit for a while with Zechariah and Elizabeth and the story of how they came to bear their only son, John. The Advent story we so often associate with the joy of Christmas actually begins with deep sorrow and longing. But thankfully, in the kingdom of God, there is always more to the story than meets the eye, Enuma Okoro writes. Zechariah and Elizabeth were good people. They had maintained faith and hope in God for many years, despite Elizabeth s inability to conceive, a condition considered shameful in their time. So they were quite familiar with the universal human experiences of longing and waiting. Even though this couple s story takes up only one chapter in Luke s Gospel, it contains enough lessons about faith and life to last for weeks. In her beautifully written, imaginative meditations for each day of Advent, Okoro looks closely at the doubts and longings of Zechariah and Elizabeth. As you explore their story, Okoro guides you to reflect on your own experiences of waiting and longing, of grief and the need for community, and of hungering for God. These poetic and poignant meditations will linger with you long after Christmas. Reflection questions and a prayer challenge accompany each week s meditations. A perfect book for individual or group study.

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Sit for a while with Zechariah and Elizabeth. Feel their longings and doubts, and then witness their surprise as an angel tells Zechariah that they will finally become parents in their old age. See what happens when Zechariah dares to question God's messenger. What blessings emerge from his time of silence? In this imaginative approach to the Advent story, Okoro leads you to reflect on the meaning of waiting, living with the unknown, and trusting God.

About the Author:

Enuma Okoro is a writer, speaker, and retreat leader. She graduated from Duke University Divinity School and served as director of the Center for Theological Writing there. She is the author of *Reluctant Pilgrim: A Moody, Somewhat Self-Indulgent Introvert's Sesarch for Spiritual Community** and coauthor, with Shane Claiborne and Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove, of *Common Prayer: A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals.** Okoro's work has been featured on *Good Morning America**'s Spirituality page and in *The Christian Century.

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