God of Joy, you come to us in sweeping visions and tiny signs of hope. Make our lives rich, that we may find comfort and joy as members of your family.

MATTHEW 2:23 – And after being warned in a dream, Joseph went away to the district of Galilee. There he made his home in a town called Nazareth, so that what had been spoken through the prophets might be fulfilled.

After a season in exile, God brings Jesus and his family safely to a place they can call home. Whether we have ever used the word ‘exile’ or not, we all know what it is like to be away from home—literally and metaphorically speaking. When you are traveling, even to great places, it is always good to come home to those things that are comforting and familiar. It has been said that God aicts the comfortable and comforts the aicted. When was your last spiritual experience of Exile? What was it like to return to family, friends and familiarity? Perhaps today, God is inviting you to come home, to settle in and find belonging in his family.

As we light the third candle on the Advent wreath, we give thanks for the ways in which you have invited us to belong, and the gifts of your Spirit at work in our lives.