Four Advent Questions To Start Your New Year (And Maybe Change Your Life)

Just before Christmas, it was my pleasure to share a celebratory hour or so with members of the Faith & Law Society in the Longworth HOB, hosted by the group’s extraordinary executive director, Lauren Noyes.

Among the highlights of the gathering was hearing a brief address by Bill Reidel, Lead Pastor of the Redemption Hill congregation that meets at 400 D Street, S.E. in the District of Columbia.

In keeping with the occasion, Bill was brief in his remarks, but he posed what he described as “Four Questions This Advent Season” that struck me as right on target, especially if you are wrestling with doubts about your faith, insecurity about your career or any of “the thousand ills that flesh is heir to,” according to Mr. Shakespeare.

Bill elaborated a bit on each question, of course, so what follows here is the outline, which he provided at my request following his remarks. Even in outline form, however, Bill’s points are well worth pondering in this season of the New Year and a new Congress:

Four Questions this Advent Season

1. Where do you find your hope?

Our kids have all kinds of hopes during Advent. It gets much tougher when they go from asking Santa for candy to asking for an iPhone Xs Max.

Do you have more hope in the things in front of you now? Things that you can control? Or in a Kingdom that cannot fail? If you want an indicator, a good question: What does your current level of anxiety tell you about where your hope lies?

2. What is your life preparing you toward?

What is the ultimate end you’re seeking? What is the pursuit that drives you to get out of bed each day?

Are you preparing yourself for your own success, your own kingdom? Jesus Christ invites us into His Kingdom. And if He truly is our King, then we will be able to recognize the wide gap between the way things are,  the reality around us, the way things ought to be, and the promises of God.

And that can free us to live in a way that we remember the future promises of God into our life and pursuits now. And recognize that this life is preparation for eternity in His Kingdom

3. What draws your heart to rejoice?

The source of our affections is an issue of worship. Every one of us worships, all the time. The only thing that changes person to person, moment to moment is the object of our worship.

What makes your heart sing? What fills you with the warmth and joy and thrill of life? Or do you even remember what that feels like? As adults we are conditioned to avoid that kind of feeling.

It’s childish! It’s like Buddy the Elf freaking out over Santa or being excited about the mail tubes in the mail room. Are you able to actually rejoice with childlike joy Jesus tells us that to such as children belongs His Kingdom.

4. Where do you seek peace?

Personally? What do you turn to for peace and rest? How are you directly working to make and extend peace? In your work, in your home, in your neighborhood, Jesus Christ invites us under His reign as the Prince of Peace, commissioned as Ambassadors of His Kingdom.  

Author: Mark Tapscott

Follower of Christ, devoted husband of Claudia, doting father and grandfather, conservative lover of liberty, journalist and First Amendment fanatic, former Hill and Reagan aide, vintage Formula Ford racer, Okie by birth/Texan by blood/proud of both, resident of Maryland. Go here: