As we enter this season of holiday celebration, you might hear many references to advent. Let’s discuss what it is and its importance to us as Christians.
Advent is essentially a season of preparation that takes place during the four weeks preceding the birth of Jesus Christ and the celebration of Christmas. It begins the fourth Sunday prior to Christmas Day. Each week this month during our sermon series, The Gifts of Christmas, we will focus on one of the four tenants of advent: hope, love, joy and peace.
If you’re looking for ways to celebrate advent at home, here are a few ideas found online:
• Make an Advent prayer chain. Use construction paper cut into twenty-four strips. Write a prayer concern on each strip. Use tape to tape the first strip into a circle. Take the second strip and insert it into the first strip before taping it into a circle. Continue until you have a chain. On Monday, December 4, open your first strip and pray together as a family for what is on the strip.
• Make a family blessing jar. Place an empty jar on your dining table. Each day during Advent, state one blessing for which you are thankful. Write the blessing on a slip of paper and put it in the jar. On Christmas Day, pour out the blessings. Read together and give thanks to God for the blessings you have enjoyed during Advent.
• Purchase an advent calendar or create your own and each day use it as reminder to pray for or do something kind for someone else.
• When you receive Christmas cards in the mail this holiday season, use them as a reminder to pray for the person or family who sent them.
• Pray as a family together each day of advent.
• Create an advent Christmas playlist that includes songs with themes to remind you of why we celebrate advent.
• Be intentional about serving others. Donate to a charity or volunteer at a shelter.
• Visit or create a nativity scene to remind you of Christ’s birth.
As we enter this season of celebration, we hope you’ll remember the true reason for the season.
For further study: Galatians 4:4–5