Advent Book Review: Songs for the Waiting by Magrey R. deVega
Disclosure / Disclaimer: I received this ebook, free of charge,from Westminister John Knox Press, via Netgalley, for review purposes on this blog. No other compensation, monetary or in kind, has been received or implied for this post. Nor was I told how to post about it, all opinions are my own.
And now for another GREAT book to help you in your Advent studies and/or daily devotionals.
This one takes on revered hymns for the season!
Despite the presence of many beautiful Advent songs in many of our hymnals, most of us would prefer to skip right to singing our favorite Christmas carols. But in our rush to get to the joy of Christmas, we forget what Advent is all about—watching and waiting for the coming of a promised king.
It is not about shopping, partying, gift wrapping, and vacationing. It is about resting, trusting, praying, and seeking. Through the words of moving Advent hymns and the powerful words of Scripture, Songs for the Waiting will help readers reclaim a sense of the beautiful anticipation and preparation that is central to Advent.
Magrey had me at hello, with starting with my favorite all-time holiday hymn, "O Come, O Come Emmanuel". Like him, the song has always held so much of the emotion of the season! It is a wonderful place to start this study! The 29 study encompasses 9 hymns, including "Prepare the Way for the Lord", "I Want to Walk as a Child of the Light", "Hail to the Lord's Annointed" and "Silent Night",
The hymns are broken down into multiple days, and each verse is taken at a time. The verse is follows by a bible verse, and then the devotional study of the day, including topics like forgiveness, wisdom, worry, and grace, This is then followed by a reflection on the day and a prayer .Each day's reading would only taking about 15 minutes, but each allows for plenty of family discussion after the devotion is read, as well as ideas on how to make the holiday more meaningful within the days framework. I would then follow up with singing of the day's hymn, as a reminder of the glory of each!
While some of the hymns may not be too familiar, they are old standards for the Advent season, and truly represent it within their lovely verses. if you are looking for a way to take the commercial out of the season, this book might be a good start for your family. The devotionals discuss modern life, movies and books, but put them in a proper perspective, to assist us in remembering what the season is truly about. The book would also be great for an adult bible study class during the season!
About the Author:
Magrey R. deVega is the Senior Pastor at Hyde Park United Methodist Church in Tampa, Florida. He is the author of Awaiting the Already: An Advent Journey through the Gospels and a contributor to Feasting on the Gospels: John Volume 1 and the forthcoming A Preachers Guide to Lectionary Sermon Series, both published by Westminster John Knox Press.