This week marks the first Sunday of Advent as we celebrate Christ's birth. Advent simply means "coming." Together with Christians around the world in this season, we identify with Israel, who waited hundreds of years for the coming of their King and Savior -- as we also look forward to Jesus' second coming. But even though Israel had expected the Messiah's coming for hundreds of years, we'll see in this series in the Gospel of Matthew how truly unexpected his coming was in so many ways. Indeed, our God delights to work through unexpected circumstances in history and also in our own lives.