Love All

December 23, 2021

by Erin Bird

I know I shouldn't be surprised, but it is hard to believe Advent is almost over. During Advent in these News & Notes emails, we've been considering the four tenets of Advent Conspiracy: Worship Fully, Spend Less, Give More, and Love All. We've looked at the first three, which means for this last week, we'll let the Advent Conspiracy team share their thoughts on Tenet #4: Love.* Enjoy!


At Christmas, one of the things that should distinguish a Christ-follower is a love that reaches out to the marginalized and forgotten.

Such giving is an act of true worship. For Jesus, this is personal. Read the Christmas narrative and remember that the Son of God chose to be born into a family that was struggling with poverty. Nobody expected the Messiah to be born in a manger in the little town of Bethlehem.

Over and over again in Scripture, we see Jesus teaching that He is on the side of the impoverished. As followers of Christ, we are called to do the same–to lavishly love the poor, the hurting, and the lonely. The people in our neighborhoods, in our schools, in our cities, and around the world.

When God’s people serve in humble, generous ways, the story of Jesus is told again and again. The poor in our world will be touched by God through how we choose to celebrate Christmas. Through our actions and our words, people will be reminded that they are loved by the Creator of the universe, and He has not forgotten them.

When we show up and love in the name of God, God shows up.

Love All

That’s part of the mystery of partnering with Jesus in the work he is still doing. Remember to love and serve not out of a place of guilt, but as an act of worship. We must not forget that. The good news of the gospel is for all people, including us! We radically love others because we have personally experienced the radical love of God. That changes our hearts, and it should change the way we celebrate Christmas.

Ways to Love All this year:

  • Donate the money you saved from spending less.
  • Invite someone to attend Christmas Eve services with you this week, then share a meal together afterward.
  • Be the person with an extra dose of patience this week. Listen well to others. Offer grace.
  • Read Matthew 25. Notice how much Jesus cares about the way we love and serve others.
  • Sign-up to volunteer at the monthly Waverly Food Pantry.
  • Pray for families around the world that are in need: single moms, refugees, villages without clean water, the homeless in your city.
  • Volunteer at a local organization. Go with your family, friends, or small group. Then talk about the experience and see what you learned.

*appeared originally on the Advent Conspiracy blog

Erin Bird Lead Pastor - Riverwood Church

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Riverwood Church, Waverly Iowa

We are on a mission to help people love like Jesus loved and live like Jesus lived.

It doesn't matter to us if you:

  • are a Wartburg student or a grandparent,
  • vote Democrat or Republican,
  • are married, divorced, or single,
  • have gone to church for years or haven't been to church in years,
  • make $100,000/yr. or wonder how you're going to pay rent this month,
  • or fear your past mistakes make you unlovable to God or others.

No matter where you are in your spiritual journey, we want to help you become who God has created you to be.

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