I know, at this point you've been to Walmart, or wherever, and lamented the present reality that Christmas is already knocking at our doors. Even before Halloween, you probably noticed pre-lit trees going up along a few scantly staged aisles of decor featuring snowmen and elven-like characters. Yes, my friends, Christmas is right around the corner. So before it's here and you're caught unprepared, deer-in-headlights mode fully engaged... please, hear me: prepare yourself for the season of Advent now. To do this, we're going to have to step away from music and Sunday morning.
So, what is Advent? If you've been in a church long enough, you've probably heard that term tossed around more than a few times. There might even have been a wreath with candles and someone reading a piece of scripture involved. If you're still unsure of what Advent is, it's okay, you're not alone. Let's dig into the meaning of Advent from a high altitude.
The process for designing a sermon series identity –the main graphic we put on all our series-related content– begins with time in the Bible going over the scriptures that will be preached from, obviously. The main series identity for Romans 4 was no different. But before it ever was put in front of the congregations eyes, there was question that kept popping up about one element in the artwork: the color bars in the upper left.
Personally, the artist in me was perfectly happy leaving its purpose undefined and ambiguous. I mean... I knew what it's purpose was, that's enough, right? Besides, it's sort of fun to provide a viewer with an image whose message is obvious, while simultaneously providing another image within that's less defined. It allows for engagement with a piece of art to take place. It might even generate some useful questions. Yes... questions such as "What's with the color bar thingy in the upper left-hand corner?" Which is basically what Pastor Josh asked me in an email after reviewing the Romans 4 artwork.
Nailed it, folks.
Pastor Josh found my explanation satisfactory, but he wasn't he wasn't the only one that inquired about it's meaning. In fact, that question came up during a planning meeting with multiple people representing our leadership, production, and communications staffs. So I explained it's meaning to everyone, and, again, I was perfectly happy leaving its purpose undefined and ambiguous, everyone else... not so much. They felt it was a useful teaching tool and something beneficial for us as a congregation so it shouldn't be left undefined. In the end, we struck a deal to let it roll without an explanation at first, then after a couple weeks write a post explaining it. After a few weeks of being subjected to color bars and test patterns in the Romans 4 artwork and the pre-sermon bumper video... let me explain.