December 1st has in many ways marked the been the beginning of the Christmas season in our home. One of our favorite traditions as a family when my kids were growing up was celebrating advent. Typically, we would get an advent calendar with little windows with verses behind them that we would open each day beginning on December 1 and ending on December 25. Through the years we added and/or tried different other advent activities to add to our celebration, but the “countdown” to Christmas day, Jesus’ birthday, was always an aspect that we didn’t miss. In many churches, Advent is a significant part of the Christmas tradition, but just like everything else, the secular world has also embraced this historically spiritual aspect of the Christmas season. Just a quick google search will take you to numerous different “advent” calendars or countdowns that have nothing to do with the birth of Jesus. Yet, sadly, many Christians (including me) also struggle to truly embrace the beauty and wonder of this glorious season because of busyness. But, this year, a series of significant events have led me to recommit myself to slowing down and reflecting on all that this season means. So, for the next 25 days, join me in a daily devotional journey as we reflect and make Christ the center of our Christmas season!
Reflection: The word advent means arrival but, specifically, it is a reference to the arrival of Jesus Christ into the world. The “Advent season” usually starts four weeks before Christmas and concludes with the celebration of Christ’s birth on Christmas Day. While many people celebrate Christmas with the buying of gifts and endless activities, the concept of advent is centered around slowing down and focusing in on the real reason for the season. The “advent” of the Messiah simply means that the God of the universe came to earth to show us the way back to him for one reason – LOVE! So this is where we begin.
John 3:16-17 – “For this is the way God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.
Digging Deeper: Read I John 4:7- 5:4 – Identify all of the aspects of God’s love mentioned here. What truth from this passage can you apply to your life this holiday season?
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