About the Beer:
Our final beer this year comes to us from Epic Brewing Company, located the heart of Mormon country in Salt Lake City, Utah! The founders, David Cole and Peter Erickson, originally from California, started an international aquaculture company in Utah in 1992. In 2008, Utah law changed allowing these two entrepreneurs to pursue their longtime dream of opening a strong beer microbrewery in Utah. Admittedly, beer geeks, foodies and “Epic” adventure junkies, they share a passion for making and drinking fine ales and lagers. The Epic team has a strong belief in doing everything “all out.”
Big Bad Baptist is a whiskey barrel-aged Imperial Stout brewed with cocoa nibs and coffee beans. Each release of this beer is made with a different dark roasted coffee to provide a slightly different experience year after year. When poured, there will be a big, fluffy head with a nose of whiskey. The chocolate, coffee, and malty flavors come through as you drink! The website has no story about where the beer gets its name, but I like to think this beer was made for the exact purpose of sipping on a great beer while reflecting or reminiscing; a perfect beer for our purposes.
For more information on Epic Brewing Company checkout their website: www.epicbrewing.com
Also, please let us know what beers or styles you particular enjoyed this year, and which ones you didn’t, so we know how to better tailor our beers in future years!
In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 And everyone went to his own town to register. 4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. 8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, 14 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”
John 1:14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
Tonight’s reflection comes from “Preparing for Christmas” by Fr. Richard Rohr.
“Let me begin with a quote from twentieth-century writer G.K. Chesterton: “When a person has found something which he prefers to life itself, he for the first time has begun to live.” Jesus in his proclamation of the kingdom told us what we could prefer to life itself—and it would work!. The Bible ends by telling us we are called to be a people who could say, “Come, Lord Jesus”. We all have to ask for the grace to prefer something to our small life itself because we have been offered the shared Life, the One Life, the Eternal Life, God’s Life that became visible in this world in Jesus. We do not get there by being correct. We get there by being connected.
The kingdom is finally to be identified as the Lord Jesus himself. When we say, “Come, Lord Jesus” on this Christmas Eve, we are preferring his Lordship to any other loyalty system. If Jesus is Lord, then Caesar is not. If Jesus is Lord, then the economy and stock market are not. If Jesus is Lord, then my house and possessions, family and job are not. If Jesus is Lord, then I am not!
What we are all searching for is someone to surrender to, something we can prefer to life itself. The promise that came into this world on Christmas, is the gift totally given, free for the taking, once and for all, to everybody and to all of creation who receives. God in Jesus chose and said “yes” to our humanity. Jesus came to dwell among us…’full of grace and truth’. Incarnation is already Redemption!”
Now, as you sip on this imperial stout, enjoy celebrating Christmastide!
I hope that you have been blessed during these 24 days of waiting, anticipating, and longing. It is ‘Always Advent’, but every day can now be Christmas because the one we thought we were just waiting for has come once and for all.