Reading for the Fourth Sunday of Advent (as used by Rev. Fairchild)
Last Sunday we lit the candle of joy. We light it and the candles of hope and peace again as we remember that Christ, who was born in Bethlehem, will come again to fulfil all of God's promises and bring us everlasting peace and joy. (lighting of the candles of hope, peace, and joy)
The fourth candle of Advent is the Candle of Love. God's love is a perfect love. It holds nothing back.
God, in love, gives us everything we need to live a life of hope and peace.
The Bible says that "God so loved the world that he gave His only Son, so that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life." Jesus shows us God's perfect love.
This is what love is like: Love is patient, love is kind and envies no one. Love is never boastful or conceited, rude or selfish. Love is not quick to take offense, it keeps no records of wrongs, it does not gloat over other people's troubles, but rejoices in the right, the good, and the true. There is nothing that love cannot face, there is no limit to its faith, to its hope, to its endurance.
Love never ends. We light the candle of love to remind us that Jesus brings us God's love and shows us how to love others. (lighting of the candle of love)
Love is like a light shining in a dark place. As we look at this candle we celebrate the love we find in Jesus Christ.
Prayer: Thank you God for the love you give us. We ask that as we wait for all your promises to come true, and for Christ to come again, that you would remain present with us. Help us today, and everyday to worship you, to hear your word, and to do your will by sharing your love with each other. We ask it in the name of the one who was born in Bethlehem. Amen.