2016 Advent Devotional

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Prepare for a Priority Change
Friday, 12/9/2016

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Beloved, I do not consider that I have made it my own; but this one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the heavenly call of God in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 3:13-14


These verses come from Paul’s letter to the church of Philippi. Philippians is sometimes referred to as the epistle of joy. What a lovely thought, that a letter from a man imprisoned can, at its very core, be joy filled. Paul’s hope comes across so clearly in this verse. He isn’t focused on past mistakes or hard trials (and let’s be honest Paul and John the Baptist had a lot of trials!). He is focused on the present. His focus is on writing a letter to inspire and inform the church of Philippi, a letter that would go on to inspire millions of people!

Paul’s ability to let go of what has been, so that he can be a part of all the beauty of the present moment, is in large part what makes him such a dynamic and compelling apostle. He has let go of what was so that he can embrace what is. And what is, is God’s love. How beautiful would all of our lives be if we could embrace that kind of living?


God, help me to let go of my agenda and run toward your call. Help me to prioritize your love and leave behind what needs to be left behind. By your strength, may I press on toward the goal of Christ.


How can we be in prayer with you?
Please let us know!


  1. What does the heavenly call of God in Christ Jesus look like for you currently?
  2. Our joy in Christ is bigger than our circumstances. Are there any circumstances that have felt bigger than your joy?

Family Corner

Daily Scripture

“While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son.”

Luke 2:6-7


Share photos and stories about your child’s earliest days and months.

Parents, locate a baby picture of yourself to share as well.

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Highland Park United Methodist Church
3300 Mockingbird Lane
Dallas, Texas