“I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, and for this reason I do not cease to give thanks for you as I remember you in my prayers.” (Ephesians 1:15 – 16)
If I had to discern, I do not think that passage could be applied to a Celtic Advent. I do not actually know if the Celtic tradition that started Advent two weeks early had scripture that was pertinent. And quite honestly, I have not made inquiries. But it does seem to me that the church at Ephesus was displaying a strong Christian lifestyle. And was/is the purpose of the two extra weeks preceding Advent.
“I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him, so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe, according to the working of his great power.” (Verses 17 – 19)
Paul’s prayer on behalf of the church at Ephesus also brings to mind the celebration of the Reign of Christ, invoking as he does the Lord Jesus and the Divine. This is even more evident in the following verses.
“God put this power to work in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the age to come. And he has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.” (Verses 20 – 23)
It is interesting to consider, is it not beloved reader, who exactly we are preparing for during Advent. A small baby? A humble teacher? A knowledgeable rabbi? The Divine that Paul invokes in the passage is beyond worthy to prepare for. But the considerations at Advent are further back in the story of the Messiah – at least according to our Western Revised Common Lectionary understanding. Maybe it would be worthwhile for me to investigate if there was a collection or tradition of passages connected to Celtic Advent. While I do that, beloved reader, I gently suggest you think on who you will be preparing for during Advent. Shalom & Selah!