Advent 2020

Weekly Advent Activities

During this Christmas season we will be providing your household with inward challenges and outward challenges.

Inward Challenges are when we focus on the scriptures and the story of Jesus. Our goal is that our minds, hearts and souls would grow closer to God.

Outward Challenges are when we go outside the walls of our homes (even if that is virtually) to reach out to neighbors, family, and friends in Jesus' name.

Week One Challenge


God had already prepared a plan in His own time for Zechariah and Elizabeth and it was much grander than they were thinking. God has a plan to meet your needs as well.



Read Luke 1: 5-25

   - Many were gathered outside the temple praying with expectancy in a time when they desperately needed the Lord (v. 10).

     What does it mean to pray expectantly? When have you prayed expectantly?

   - What unexpected thing has God done in your life?

   - Share about the areas in your life that feel uncertain.

   - Can you think of a time in the past when you prayed and God answered that prayer?

   - What do you think we could learn about waiting from this passage?



Email to make plans to receive an envelope with $100 in it.


Pray and ask God to help you come up with a plan to meet the needs of someone outside your family using that $100. Keep in mind that the person you are investing in has no idea that their need has already been met through your plans! Sounds like the Advent season doesn’t it?

Suggestions for Outward Activity


We’ve often challenged our church family to be a river not a reservoir…letting the grace of God flow out of us into others. The New Cov family wants to give you an opportunity to do just that! We have an envelope with $100 for you to share with someone who needs it! 


A hundred dollars can go a long way to meet some immediate needs for people around you. Think outside the lines and look for opportunities to surprise/encourage/overwhelm those around you. Consider leaving a generous tip for someone who obviously is working hard, long hours and not being paid very well.


Enlist your community group and brainstorm some ways to spend that hundred dollars. Maybe you would all want to combine your money and bless somebody in a huge way; the sky is the limit here. Is there someone at your office, grocery store, neighborhood, local convenience store, school, etc., who is in need?


You might consider a prayer walk downtown and look for God’s leadership to share that money with a homeless person. If you feel God nudging you to give, simply tell them that God loves them, cares about them and is aware of their needs.


Spend some time thinking whom has God placed in your pathway who might benefit from the money?


If you have children, include them in all of your discussions, beginning and ending in prayer, asking for God’s guidance.

Week Two Challenge


This week, we will see that God is still the God of miracles and it’s never too late for Him to work in your uncertainty.



Read Luke 1:26-38

• Do you have a situation in your life that seems impossible or too big for God?

• Discuss what it would look like in your life to respond to your seemingly impossible situation?

• When you hear that “nothing is impossible with God,” how does that make you feel?

• What do you think God would want you to do with your impossible situation?

• Create a visual, write down a verse, quote or poem that reminds you of God’s greatness. Post it in a visible place in your home. Start and end each day with praying to allow you to focus on God’s greatness.



Bake or purchase a dessert or snack and deliver it to some of your neighbors with an invite to our Christmas Eve services (3:00, 5:00, and 8:00pm). Who knows if this is what they needed to focus their lives on Jesus?

Suggestions for Outward Activity


Spend time each day/evening praying for the person who received (or will receive) your hundred dollars (see above). Pray that God opens their eyes to Him through your timing and generosity.


Did you know that people are more open to accepting an invitation to check out a church service at Christmas than any other time of the year? This year, perhaps more than ever before, people need hope. Ask God to reveal to you whom you can invite for Christmas Eve services whether online or in person. Make plans to invite them this week.


Knowing that people are more open at the Christmas season, ask God to open your eyes to your neighbors, friends, work associates who may not attend any church. Our Christmas Eve services at 3:00pm, 5:00pm, and 8:00pm will be inspiring and will point people to Jesus!

Week Three Challenge


This week, we will see that active waiting rises and falls on focus and worship!



Read Luke 1:39-56. Pay special attention to examples of God reversing injustices.

• List the attributes (signs or descriptions) of God that Mary describes.  Which attributes are easy for you to see in Him? Which are harder?

• What injustices plague our world, or our country, or our city?

• What injustice (wrong things) do you actually see or encounter around you?

• Who does God help?

• Who are the “humble,” the “hungry,” the “servants” of today?



Pray and make a plan to address an injustice around you: reach out to someone near you who needs a hand, or consider a gift of time or money to an organization helping those in our community who are hurting (Good Neighbor Center, People’s City Mission, Fresh Start, St. Monica’s).


Listen to and/or sing some of your favorite Christmas songs while you drive around and look at Christmas lights. Come by New Cov on Wednesday, Dec. 16 between 6:30-8:00pm, and we will serve everyone in your car a cup of hot cocoa.

Suggestions for Outward Activity


Having listed/noted injustices around you, discuss some of the immediate barriers you’ll have to overcome to start addressing injustices.


Why do you think it’s so easy to come up with all the reasons why you can’t make a difference?


Consider pulling in a few of your friends and/or your community group to help address the injustice you’re concerned about.


What’s the first step you can take to address it?

Week Four Challenge

This week we will see that God’s rescue mission is not undermined by uncertainty.


Read Luke 2: 1-7

• What sticks out to you about the story of Jesus’ birth?

• How do you think Mary and Joseph felt about the timing of the census (and as a result their need to travel to Bethlehem)?

• Why do you think it is significant that Jesus was born in humble circumstances?

• Who was the messenger that told you about Jesus?

• The night of Jesus’ birth was filled with uncertainty for Mary and Joseph. Share about an area of uncertainty in your life right now?

• What would it look like to trust God with that area?


Plan a party to celebrate the birth of Jesus! Decorate your home in a festive way and make a cake or favorite birthday dessert to share with others.

Invite a close friend or family to join you over Zoom, Skype, etc. in your celebration. At the party share how and when you decided to follow Jesus. You might think in terms of: your life before you met Jesus, when you chose to follow Jesus, and your life after choosing to follow Jesus. Or take turns sharing what Jesus has brought to your life.

Brainstorm Questions

Regardless of how few people you may have in your home, I would encourage you to plan a birthday celebration for Jesus regardless! Consider a Zoom/Skype party to take it to the next level.

During the celebration, share how Jesus is making a difference in your life. Share how and when you decided to follow Jesus. You might think in terms of: your life before you met Jesus, when you chose to follow Jesus, and your life after choosing to follow Jesus. If that seems like long ago and a little removed from your current situation, consider sharing how Jesus is making a difference in your life today. Is there an area that He is growing you in or a practice that you are engaging in that is helping you grow in your conneciton to Him?

If it seems appropriate during the conversation, try sharing the good news of Jesus with them. We have used the following link to help us clearly share the gospel. You might take a few minutes to view the video on the page and download the app. It is such a helpful way to share the love of Jesus in a clear, succinct manner.

If you’re wondering about gift giving, our Christmas Eve services will take up an offering for Lincoln Crisis Pregnancy Center. You’ll be able to give online through our church and everything that comes in will go directly to this amazing organization.