What is Advent Conspiracy?
Long ago Christmas changed the world and we believe that can happen again.    For many of us, Christmas is not the happiest time of the year.  We lament at seeing the holiday push start earlier and earlier each year.  The holidays brings anxiety over busy schedules, and spending money we don’t have for things no one really needs.  It’s full of expectations that aren’t met, pressure to find the right gifts, finding the right decorations, and the season not feeling spiritual enough.   Many of us reach the end of each Advent season with an aching emptiness.  Something deep inside tells us we missed it- – whatever it is our soul longs for this time of year.   If Christmas is about gifts, decorations, parties, spending and buying, then these feelings make sense.  Nothing will ever be enough and there will always be disappointment.  Thankfully, that’s not what Christmas is about.  
Christmas is not about us, it’s all Jesus.
This Christmas we invite you to: 
Worship Fully
Nearly every character in the Christmas story that encountered our King responded in the same way:  Worship.  Let’s make the conscious effort to reorient our hearts toward Christ.  Christmas began with worship, may it end with worship.
Spend Less
In our hearts we know mindless consumption is not the way to celebrate Jesus.  But spending less does not mean spending nothing.  Rather we will thoughtfully evaluate what companies and causes we support through our purchases.
Give More
The best gifts celebrate a relationship.  They require our time and our energy.  Relational giving means that we think about the other person-who they are and what they care about.
Love All
Christmas is a chance to move closer to those in crisis.  We will love others as Jesus has loved us.  The poor and hurting of our world can be reached by God through the way we choose to celebrate Christmas.
The Story Begins Here   The story of Christmas is the story of God’s love for all people.  From the beginning, God created us to have a relationship with Him but because of sin, the relationship was broken.     When Adam and Eve chose their own way, instead of being obedient to God, He could have said, “Too bad, you messed up and that was your only chance,” but He didn’t.  God already had a plan in place and His plan was something so big and so amazing, His love for us would be undeniable.
  Imagine what it must have been like for God’s people.  Long before Jesus was born, they had been told that a Savior, the Messiah and King, would be coming.  For hundreds and hundreds of years they waited, wondering when He would come.
  The word “advent” actually means “the coming or arrival.”  As we prepare for the coming of Christmas this year, let’s consider what this celebration is all about, and whether the manner in which we celebrate is worthy of who we are celebrating.
What if Christmas was no longer about stuff?  What if this Christmas we could Spend Less, Give More, Worship Fully, and Love All
Our donations for Advent Conspiracy will be going to the Redmond Cold Weather Shelter.  The shelter is staffed by Shepherd’s House residents who are advanced in the program.  They are earning money to save for the future, being independent.  It takes 3 to 4 people to staff each evening @ $7.70 an hour.  It costs $300 to $400 per night to operate.  There are donation envelopes available at the church.
You can also help by making a meal for the guest at the shelter.  If you are interested in doing this, go to redmondshelterfood.org.