It hardly seems possible that we’re drawing near to the end of another year. In just a few short weeks, we’ll be deep into winter and a new year will have begun and our lives will continue to move along as they always do. As we grow older, it seems that the time passes ever more quickly and it can be difficult to pause, to savor, to focus.
Advent is a wonderful time to set aside the busyness of life and to reflect on Jesus, our Lord and Savior. This immeasurable gift that we have been given in the birth of a savior who would live and die and rise again that we might have eternal life, suffering no separation from the God who loves us and formed us. The beauty and the awe of this gift – Emmanuel, God with us – can become trite, lost, muted.
Take hold of this season of anticipation and remind yourself daily of the gift of Emmanuel. Use the twenty-four days before Christmas, not merely as a countdown to the holiday, but as a connection to a holy God who loved us so much that He sent His only Son to earth to dwell among us that we might also be called children of God.
One of our favorite Advent resources is the She Reads Truth/He Reads Truth community. With daily scripture readings and devotionals, you can follow along online. There are many Advent devotional books to choose from as well. Some of our favorites are Come Let Us Adore Him by Paul David Tripp or The Dawning of Indestructible Joy by John Piper. Create an Advent wreath with your children and mark each Sunday of December with candle and song and scripture.
During our worship services in December, we will incorporate scripture, songs, and prayers to prepare our hearts to give Him room. On December 17th, our Sunday School children will present a Nativity play and on December 24th, our worship service will be inspired by a traditional Lessons & Carols format.
However you choose to mark the days of Advent, our hope is that you would come to know the Hope of the world in a deeper way. Let us take this month to repeat the sounding joy to a world that is desperate to know the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Jesus.