Christmas shopping, parties, programs, decorating, gift wrapping, baking, more shopping, calendar coordination, family conflict, babysitter and dogsitter acquiring, travel plans, last minute shopping….
What’s filling your Christmas season this year?
This time of year is incredibly special and meaningful — at least that is what we desire for the season of Christmas. We long for moments of awe and wonder. But most often, at least in my world, the moments of awe and wonder turn into busyness and chaos. There are so many options to make the season bright, but too much brightness (or in the case of Christmas – busyness) is too much.
Several years ago, I was introduced to the practice of Advent. Advent is not so much a countdown to Christmas, but a time to prepare our hearts for the Christmas season. It broadens the celebration from one day to four weeks of reflecting on Jesus coming into the world then, now, and in the future.
Since that introduction, setting aside time during the four weeks before Christmas to reflect on Jesus’ birth, has become such a calming rhythm in the midst of this busy season. Simple reflections and practices have brought depth and meaning, as well as awe and wonder, to this time of year for me.
Advent began on Sunday, November 27 and lasts until Christmas Eve. We hope you will find a way to invite the calm into your Christmas. We will be writing weekly posts which focus on Jesus bringing calm into the chaos. Along with that, for those in our VU community, we have a copy of Scott Erickson’s Honest Advent, a daily reading during Advent, and opportunities to join in Advent Experiences where we will experience calm during chaos each Wednesday morning in December. Reach out if you’d like a copy of the book or to secure your spot in our in-person Advent experiences.
We pray that this year the practice of Advent provides calm amid chaos.