In the Christian tradition this is the first week of Advent that culminates with Christmas.  Advent is all about waiting, anticipating, and remembering the birth of Jesus.   In my church, Advent marks the beginning of the church calendar.  I love this!  Advent starts our year, rather than ends it.  Why?  Because Advent sets us up for a healthy rhythm of waiting.

Let’s be honest though.  Waiting is tough….as my kids reminded me already with the Christmas countdown.  But the good part about waiting is slowing down enough to enjoy the process, contemplate the story, and just stop moving for a minute.

Our work in Oasis is about anti-trafficking and giving freedom to those who are enslaved, but our vision is for community.  The first is about action, movement and fighting for something.  Community on the other hand, is slow, thoughtful and driven by the stories of people.  We believe strong communities don’t allow trafficking to happen, because the communities are fully invested in each other.  Advent gives us a time to shift our thinking from action to community that makes that action happen.

At the end of the Biblical creation narrative we hear God say that ‘it is good’.  A friend noted that it does not say perfect, but good.  He went on to say that this is because human beings are supposed to be involved in making it better, or perfect, which it will be one day.

This advent I am thankful for an Oasis community around the world that is working to make things better - by restoring broken communities and fighting the atrocities of human trafficking. As we remember the Christmas story this season, we are reflecting on this community and so thankful for the part each of you play.  It is our hope that, in whatever Holiday tradition you celebrate, you use this season as a time to pause and celebrate your community too.  Thanks for being part of our community.