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“And the stars in the sky fell to earth, as figs drop from a fig tree when shaken by a strong wind.”

–Revelation 6:13

We began 2021 by giving out Star words during Epiphany in January. Do you remember your Star Word? Have you looked at it or thought about it recently? My Star Word is Contemplation and I keep my paper star tucked in the front of my Bible so that I see it daily. My word is a reminder that there is much to contemplate in the days in which we live.

The idea behind the Star words is to have a word to focus on and be guided by throughout the year. In connecting your Star Word to your life and faith, sometimes simply recalling your word can bring you back to centering yourself on Emmanuel, which means God with us. As we begin this Advent season, I invite you to pull out your Star Word and see if it means the same thing it did for you when you received it or what it can mean for you as we near the end of the year.

I also invite you to think about stars in another way. Either imagine cutout stars or literally take time to cut some stars out of paper. On each star, write something you wish to have fall away from you during this Advent season, like a star falling from the sky. It may be things for which you are waiting for a change or transformation. Perhaps it’s a particular fear, a hurt, an injustice, a place of anger or selfishness, a confession; or a place for which you need forgiveness or reconciliation. Perhaps it’s something that you not only want to have fall away, but that you are willing to commit to working towards having fall away.

If you have ever seen a falling star from the sky, it can be a beautiful site. So too, it can be beautiful and freeing to have burdens fall away from us like stars falling from the sky.

This first week of Advent focuses on Hope. As we await the coming of the Christ child as Emmanuel, may we have the hope to both be guided by the stars and allow some stars to fall from our sky.