December – Advent

noun: advent; plural noun: advents
1. the arrival of a notable person, thing, or event.
2. the first season of the Christian church year, leading up to Christmas and including the four preceding Sundays.
Synonyms: arrival, appearance, emergence, occurrence, dawn, birth, rise, development, approach, coming
Christian Theology
the coming or second coming of Christ.

Making Christmas meaningful…or NOT making Christmas meaningful? I try to make an effort every day to pause for quiet reflection on Jesus. So as not to have this Christmas  “like every other”, merely emphasizing on decorations and gifts. I want to strive to live an intentional life, pausing on the reason for the season.
It can take me days to set up and decorate, getting things just right (ok, I may be a tad OCD and go slightly overboard 😉 ). Between the lights, the tree, the shopping and baking and wrapping…it’s no wonder I usually wait until Christmas Eve to ponder the true meaning of the holiday season!
25 days of christmas
I came across this “25 days of Christmas” advent book that I had, but I never really took the time to read, and decided there’s no time like the present! It’s great because it gives 5, 10 and 25 minute options! Here’s a blurb from today’s reading:
Today’s Scripture:
Luke 2:7 ~ And she gave birth to her first son. Because there was no rooms left in the inn, she wrapped the baby with the pieces of cloth and laid him in a box where animals are fed.
Suggested Longer Reading:
Luke 2:1-7
God Came Near
Max Lucado
We must be careful lest we romanticize the birth of Christ beyond reality. Nativity scenes have a way of making Jesus’s birth unreasonably fairy-tale-like. What Jesus really endured in becoming a human being was to enter this world of harsh reality…Majesty in the midst of the mundane. Holiness in the filth of sheep manure and sweat. Divinity entering the world on the floor of a stable…
There is something majestic about the birth of Christ. There is something safe about it, as well. If we keep Jesus a baby in our minds, helpless and small, we can control him, and not give him control of our life. Giving up control is not an easy thing to do, no matter how much you love the Christmas story.

 My Prayer:
We are two weeks away from celebrating Jesus’s birth! My prayer is that I’ll be mindful of the true reason for the season as the days get closer and the holiday rush is upon us. I pray that I’ll be thankful for the presents, but more so for His Presence. And while I love Christmas lights, I’ll be most grateful for the light of the world. I also know that while I love decorating, I don’t need to decorate my life before coming to Him – that He is only concerned with the internal. I pray that everyone would recognize who Jesus is…that I could show them…and that we would all strive to make room in our hearts and in our lives.
“Christmas is not a day or a season, but a condition of heart
and mind…”~ James Wallingford
Kathryn Slasor
“No room for Him,” the keeper said
That night so long ago,
“My inn is crowded, don’t you see,
The rooms now overflow. “It’s just a Child,” he must have thought,
A family, poor and plain:
My inn is filled with paying guests.
How could I dare explain?” And thus, he turned aside from One
Who chose a humble birth
To enter into human form
And save all men on earth. But lo, the shepherds in the hills
Were called, the Babe to greet;
They followed then the brilliant star
And worshipped at His feet! “No room for Him,” cry men today,
As through the world they plod;
“My life is crowded, don’t you see?
I have no room for God. How could I dare explain to all
My friends who question me,
That Jesus came to save my soul
From sin, to set me free?” O God, forbid that we become
As keepers of the inn,
And have our lives so crowded
That we have no room for Him. But now may we, Thy children dear,
Unworthy though we are,
Become as shepherds long ago,
And follow now His star.


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