An excerpt from Good Dirt: Advent, Christmastide and Epiphany
I hear the laments of parents. I am a lamenting parent. Christmas is too much about the stuff. The stuff begins to clog up the supermarket aisles as early as September. My kids are bombarded by ads trying to get them, to get me, to want to buy them their heart’s desire of shiny junk. As a Christian I want to celebrate the birth of Jesus in a way that honors him and follows in his ways.
Advent is four weeks of preparation for the King of Creation. When we put it that way it almost seems that four weeks isn’t long enough. Blue is the color for the season, specifically Royal Blue as my eldest daughter reminds me, because Jesus is the King. I admit sometimes I forget that. With all the sale ads and the meals to prepare and the ever present Christmas music, I can hardly think, I can hardly remember.
Advent is preparation, it’s remembering that Royal Blue is for a Royal King. With all the distraction that is modern life,plus the added distraction of Christmas, we need ways to remember. Several years ago at Ridgeland Community Church some saintly ladies taught me the importance of Advent. They limped my non-crafty self through the process of making an Advent wreath. They taught me the significance of preparation for the Christ Child. I am forever grateful. Through the practice of Advent I learned to lean in and celebrate this blessed season. During those first few years of practicing Advent it was just my husband and I, and surprisingly we never fought over who got to blow out the candles. Now, my children take turns to see who gets to blow candle wax all over the table. Advent is a staple in our home. It is a practice that grounds us to the truths of Jesus.
What do some of your Advent practices look like?
How do they draw you into the quiet preparation for the Christ child?