The Gospel of Christmas: Reflections for Advent

Overview

A child yearns as at no other time in the days leading up to Christmas.

That yearning doesn't entirely go away as we grow older. It still lingers in the backs of our minds. We imagine that Christmas is mainly for children and our adult lives don't stop in the way that children's lives stop on Christmas morning, so we don't give ourselves time to notice the yearning. But it's there—hope mingled with anxiety about what lies ahead.

In The Gospel ...

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The Gospel of Christmas: Reflections for Advent

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Overview

A child yearns as at no other time in the days leading up to Christmas.

That yearning doesn't entirely go away as we grow older. It still lingers in the backs of our minds. We imagine that Christmas is mainly for children and our adult lives don't stop in the way that children's lives stop on Christmas morning, so we don't give ourselves time to notice the yearning. But it's there—hope mingled with anxiety about what lies ahead.

In The Gospel of Christmas, Patty Kirk helps us get in touch with our muted hopes and fears and reminds us that they are met and given their resolution in the coming of Christ, which Christmas celebrates and Advent anticipates, and all our lives prepare us for.

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Editorial Reviews

Nathan Foster
"Patty Kirk's love of words and language burst forth in this thoughtful, original and intimate look at the Christmas narrative, inviting the reader to embrace the ordinary and delight in the mystery of the Christmas season."
Margot Starbuck
"Patty Kirk can write.That she writes about Advent is a gift to the rest of us who, annually, feel vaguely oppressed, chronically anxious and emotionally exhausted by the trappings of December. In her words you will discover a blessedly new kind of Advent."
Caryn Dahlstrand Rivadeneira
"What a beautiful book! Like Christmas itself, The Gospel of Christmas is filled with wonder and delight as well as with longing and sorrow. Patty Kirk charms readers with her masterful story-weaving and her dazzling application.This book is a life-changer. A must-read for Advent and for Christmas or any old time."
Publishers Weekly

When Niedzinski, a suburban Michigan housewife and mother of six, moved into a century-old country farmhouse, she naïvely ordered a flock of Columbia sheep to match her New England Countryside decorating theme. Thus began 16 years of indoctrination into the finer arts of sheep care that included breeding rams, flushing, and the snip, dip, and clip ritual. To her children's dismay, Niedzinski used the dinner hour to regale her family with the grittier details of shepherding, including cutting off newborns' tails, adopting "bummer" rejected lambs into her blue-carpeted home and accepting that a sheep's destiny is the slaughterhouse. But this is a Christian living book, not a farmer's almanac. To that end, each chapter winsomely approaches the similarities between shepherding and its spiritual parallels found throughout the Bible, where a loving shepherd is needed to guide, protect and shelter humanity. Niedzinski so beautifully depicts her foray into shepherding that readers might be tempted to order a flock for their own spiritual instruction. (Oct. 14)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780830837854
  • Publisher: InterVarsity Press
  • Publication date: 8/3/2012
  • Pages: 164
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 7.00 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Patty Kirk is writer in residence and associate professor of English at John Brown University. She is an award-winning writer and author of Confessions of an Amateur Believer and Starting from Scratch: Memoirs of a Wandering Cook.

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Table of Contents

Preface
1. Come
2. The First Snow of Winter
3. Advent
4. The Faith of a Child
5. "Stille Nacht"
6. Joseph's Dreams
7. And He Is in the Manger Now
8. Anointed
9. Troughs
10. Washing Socks
11. In the Bleak Midwinter
12. Seeking God
13. Living Life Abundantly: A Parable
Notes

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