The Friday before the first weekend in Advent, I had only just arrived home when my nearly four year-old son asked if we could begin decorating right now! My wife and I agreed (after dinner). We said that, with our nine month-old beginning to sit up and crawl, we could decorate only at a height out of her reach. We’d set up our little Christmas tree: one that fits on a table top.
I saw an Instagram post this past week made by a residential program for women who are trying to piece their lives back together after varying circumstances. The picture in the post showed a small child holding a Christmas ornament, the young son of one of the women. The child was entranced with the sparkly red ball in his hands.
When is it okay to start listening to Christmas music? This is not a trick question—I am not the worship police, but I am very aware that we Christians can be particularly judgy about music. For years, I, too, did not want to acknowledge Christmas music in Advent, not least because I love Advent and its hymns (“Comfort, Comfort Ye My People!”).
I know that it is the season of Advent, but Christmas is on my heart and mind. It’s hard to avoid, since, in the words of fictional rock-n-roll legend Billy Mack, “Christmas is all around.” Christmas is on tv, in stores, in our email boxes, and of course, we’re inundated with holiday musical classics.
There is so much I hoped to do during this Advent, for my own kids, for the children and families in my ministry, and yes, for myself. And as always, come Christmas morning, some of it will have to be put away with vague hopes and promises of next year
Looking for a simple, low-cost project to bless others this Advent? Forward Movement invites you to create Letters of Love – messages of love, hope, and inspiration for those away from home.
In the church year, Advent is a season of waiting. It’s a season when we are all encouraged to slow down and exercise our patience muscles in anticipation of the birth of our Savior.
This song tells us a very important story, like most songs do. It comes from the heart of God’s people, from across thousands of years, and still means something holy and hopeful every single time we sing it. With titles and word pictures taken from the prophet Isaiah’s conversations about the Messiah, we see all the ways Jesus has come to reconcile the world to himself. Each verse reminds us of a different promise God has bought into being, has made come true, in the person of Jesus.
The offering of #AdventWord provides a daily short reflection and visual meditation to guide Christians around the world to prepare our hearts and homes for the arrival of Christ.
Advent is officially one week away. How are you feeling about it? Will this be the year you are finally able to slow down and enjoy this season of preparation? Grow Christians tries every November to ready our community to do just that.