Yesterday, in a matter of 10 minutes, a man in a red truck ran a red light almost plowing into my car before looking at me like he had done nothing wrong. A woman, making a turn to exit the parking structure I was entering, drove into my lane and didn't so much as flinch. A mother, with child in tow, hurriedly walked around me while I was walking into Target. The look on her face that was obviously one of annoyance, which was again portrayed when our paths crossed in the store. I thanked God for protecting B and I from not 1 but 2 car accidents. I asked God and myself, "Why is this called the happiest season of all? Why is this called the most wonderful time of the year? Why are songs sung about jolly and cheer?" I know why!!!!! THE MESSIAH IS COMING!!!!! Then I asked God and myself, "How can I keep this the happiest season of all? How can I teach B that the advent season is the most wonderful time of the year? How can I make my home one of jolly and cheer and truth and love?"
- Keep the birth of Jesus the central theme by reading the prophecies and the birth story (Luke 2)
- Think about why I am giving someone a gift. Is it because I love them or because I feel I have to? Is it because I want to put a smile on their face or because I want to impress them?
- Fight STRESS and GUILT!!!! Each time I begin to get overwhelmed or begin to feel like I need to do more, I stop and focus on the reason Christmas is so important to me. I particularly focus on the shepherd's (Luke 2:8-20) and wisemen (Matt. 2: 7-12) and their faithfulness and humility to bring gifts to the Messiah.
- Say, "MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!"
- Embrace the business. There are plenty of people who would LOVE to be BUSY this time of year, but they don't have family or close friends or their living/serving abroad or their finances restrict them or their sick or or or....
- The Jesus Advent Celebration devotional (found here) that Sam and I have been reading contains a prompt at the end of each day. A few examples are, "Go to a new place today, to a neighbor's place you've never been before. Be a blessing and bring them a blessing of some sort. Leave them a Christmas card telling about Jesus...Do one thing today just to please God. Pick the hardest commandment for you to keep. Try keeping it all day long. When you fail, thank Jesus for His amazing grace..."
- Keep a constant dialogue running with God....all day....every day
- Strive to live simple. This has been a theme for me during recent months, but particularly during the advent season. I truly want to live more simply, which is requiring a lot of transformation (on my part) that is slow and grueling, at times.
- Be thankful!!! I continue to journal all of which I am thankful. Thankfulness is transforming me.
- Listen, sing, dance, worship, be silly, enjoy CHRISTmas music.
There are so many more ways in which I/Sam are trying to keep this season's focus on Jesus and on JOY! I am sure as the years pass, our traditions will become more rich and we pray our children will come to know Jesus Christ as LORD and Savior through our desire and our effort to speak, live, and celebrate truth.
Will you share how you are anticipating the coming of the Christ? Or post anything about your faith journey, giving God the glory for all that He has done.
If you decide to share....enter the URL to your direct post in the linky tool below.
You can link up any time through next Friday.
If you join, please help us find one another by sharing the "Journey of Faith" graphic within your post. You can copy and paste the code below.