About the Beer: Tonight marks the halfway point of Beer Advent. I hope that you have enjoyed the beer thus far, but more importantly, I hope that you have been able to slow down, reflect, and wait in anticipation! Also, I’d love to know which of the sours you fancied? (Should we keep sours on the calendar for the future?)
Now for tonight’s selection! Our beer tonight is found ‘ONLY IN WISCONSIN’ (your welcome Illinois participants!). New Glarus Belgian Red has over a pound of Door County Cherries in every bottle and is a beautiful marriage of wine and beer! This ale is brewed with whole Montmorency Cherries, Wisconsin Farmed Wheat and Belgian Roasted Barleys, lagered in oak tanks and balanced by Hallertau hops that have been aged at New Glarus Brewery one full year.
Tonight’s beer will pour ruby red. It is highly carbonated and will have an intense cherry flavor and bouquet. Make sure to pour this Belgian in a snifter or champagne flute in order to enhance the aromas.
As you drink, toast to life, especially life in Wisconsin! And remember New Glarus’s motto: “Drink Indigenous”
Advent Reflection: This is another reflection from the Christianity Today Advent booklet that I found particularly poignant. Before you read the devotion, take some time to read Matthew 4:1-17 and Isaiah 9:1-2
“‘On those living in the land of thee shadow of death a light has dawned’. From that time on Jesus began to preach.” – Matthew 4:16-17
“The theme of dawn appears often in the Old Testament. We read: “God will help her at the break of day (Psalm 46:5) and “I wait for the LORD more than the watchmen wait for the morning” (Psalm 130:6). Dawn represented the time of God’s rescue. At dawn, God would redeem His people from all their sins and restore justice to the world.
So when Matthew describes Jesus’ ministry as fulfilling Isaiah’s pronouncement that “a light has dawned“, he is presenting Jesus as the realization of Israel’s ancient longing for divine deliverance. The prophets of old — not just people in his own time like John the Baptist — had testified to Jesus as the true Light. The hopes of the past culminate in Christ!
Dawn also points toward the future. It begins a new day. By naming Jesus as Isaiah’s promised dawn right as He begins His preaching ministry, Matthew builds anticipation for what lies ahead: Jesus’ whole life will be a fulfillment of what God has promised. Jesus will bring sight to the blind, justice for the oppressed, and freedom for the captive (Isaiah 61:1). He will teach us what salvation means by showing us the health and wholeness of a life lived in pure love and devotion to God and others. In Jesus, we will see the true light and life that we long for.” – Han-Luen Kantzer Komline