Advent Decor & Colors

Our Advent decor and colors were done by Bailee Caldwell. Here’s how she explains her process and the meaning behind her work:

I’ve always struggled to put into words what it’s like to experience God’s presence. It’s so beautiful and powerful that it compels you to share your experience with others, but human vocabulary just can’t do it justice. Instead, I find myself comparing God’s presence to other visceral experiences—diving into a refreshing lake, feeling sunlight light warm my skin, or getting a deep belly laugh from a funny moment shared with others.

Looking at writings of saints throughout history, it is quite common to talk about The Lord using pictures, characters, or landscapes that are familiar to people. In fact, the Bible is full of such metaphors. God describes Himself as a potter, a shepherd, a star, a jealous husband, a flowing river, a pillar of fire, and many other personifications that strike a chord in our imaginations. We recognize that God doesn’t exclusively speak to His children through language, but often chooses to speak to his children through visuals and music as well.

This Advent season, we as a unified body are seeking to fully experience and feel God’s presence with us in this “already and not yet” season that is life on earth. There are endless ways to pursue God, His presence, and truth. Spiritual disciplines such as prayer and reading the Bible are where we go first and foremost. But in my spiritual life, I have often felt most seen and known by God in using my God-given gifts and experiencing His creativity in day to day life.

There is pain, confusion and tension here on earth while we wait for Christ’s return, and there is so much beauty and formation to be had in our hearts in this tension. To illustrate this, we created a visual installation to help propel the heart’s of Park church towards a full experience of Advent. I am a visual person, incorporating visuals and using creativity in my spiritual life is incredibly compelling—I know other members of our body can relate to this. We hope that as you walk through the doors of Park this Advent season, see the clay ornaments on the foyer tree, and then head back out into your day to day life, the visual sticks with you and compels you towards a deeper understanding and full experience of what God might want to do in your heart and through your life as you wait on Him.

You will notice that the ornaments on the Christmas tree in the foyer are not your typical Christmas colors. We wanted to bring in the meaning of Advent into the decor, which led us to weekly installations, each featuring different colors and visuals that are representative of an aspect of Advent. We intentionally chose to use clay to create and form the ornaments, symbolizing the malleability of our hearts and reminding us of God the potter.

Weekly Colors & Themes:

  • Week one: desert tones to symbolize waiting
  • Week two: shades of blue to symbolize mourning
  • Week three: gray to symbolize the gray area of eschatological tension; the “already and not yet”
  • Week four: purple to symbolize Christ’s royalty
  • Week five: white to symbolize Christ as our pure and spotless lamb

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