1ST SUNDAY OF ADVENT
We often miss Advent's power because these December weeks are full of Christmas parties and preparations for Christmas. Each year, the busyness of this season serves to distract us from having an Advent season that truly prepares us for the celebration of Christmas
Adopt the old European custom of Advent candles and/or an Advent calendar, fun and traditional ways to count-down to the big day
As we begin Advent, we light one candle in the midst of all the darkness in our lives and in the world. It symbolizes our longing, our desire, our hope.
Lord God,only you can see into my heart
My heart desires the warmth of your love
Help me to be a peacemaker this Advent
We need to be aware that our guide and our map for this journey is our Lord. Despite any detours or delays, we need to open to the promptings of the Holy Spirit in our lives as we approach the holy celebration of the Incarnation of Our Lord
GOOD MORNING !
I’ll be finding my Advent Wreath today and putting it out on the dining room table where I’ll light my candles and pray each day now til Christmas. I love every moment of preparing for and celebrating Christmas. All the good smells and beautiful decorations make it a very festive event.
Of course Christmas also means more time to spend with my family and to be with them is a blessing always.
I’ll begin to undecorated the house and put away the fall things and bring out some Christmas ornaments. Lots of people that I know have already done so. Some complain that Thanksgiving is barely over and we are into the Christmas Season. I can’t thing of a better thing to celebrate.
Advent will start of the festivities and they will go on til the Feast of the Three Kings in January.
Hope Lives Christmas Story
For a moment or perhaps a long while,
we are dropped into the depths of despair,
a tragedy of intense proportions.
In the darkness we struggle with difficult
and often confusing feelings.
As Christians we often feel
guilty about these feelings.
All are true human emotions,
and necessary in enabling us to cope.
God understands our pain and our suffering.
He will wrap his loving arms around us,
He will be there when no one else can.
After a time we begin to feel his presence.
You can see a faint light in the distance.
This is the light of HOPE.
Moving toward the light -
The Holy Spirit takes us by the hand
and helps us to move even closer to the light.
The light of the Lord that shines into each of our lives.Here in The Lords loving presence our souls and our wounds begin to heal.God has a plan for us and we can rest assured that we have been called here for a purpose. Our job is not yet finished. We must continue to move forward.
We might not understand the sequence of events in our lives. We might not understand the meaning of our suffering. But we have not lost everything , we are not alone.
We will always have HOPE.
As the Holiday season approaches, let us remember that Hope was born at Christmas,His name is Jesus.
And Hope does live on.
THOUGHT FOR TODAY
5 WAYS TO A MORE JOYFUL CHRISTMAS
1. STOP, LOOK, AND LISTEN: If you discover yourself becoming dulled to the joys of the season, STOP! Slow the pace down and become still, taking time to LOOK and LISTEN. Take a winter walk, curl up in a favorite chair or before the fireplace.Helen Keller once observed, "The seeing see little."
So feel the comfort of the glow of a candle, or the red of the poinsettias. Listen with new ears to laughter and bells, and to the expression of love of found in the story of the first Christmas.
2. BE WILLING TO BE SURPRISED:
Remember that God can come in the least likely ways - a Holy Child born in a village stable, a brightly shining star, an angel song in the night sky.
Watch for Him to come in equally surprising ways to you, too. When we live as if God is going to "surprise" us at any moment, in any way, in any place, then He usually does!
3. FIND WAYS TO ANTICIPATE CHRISTMAS:
How about keeping an advent calendar?
Commit yourself to perform at least one special act of kindness for each day of advent.
Write a note, letter, card or e-mail to someone to express your gratitude, to tell someone you love them, to forgive an old hurt, or just to count your blessings.
4. FREE YOUR CHILDLIKE SPIRIT:
Jesus held up childlikeness as a quality to be cultivated. (Mark 10:15)
Children are experts at dreaming up simple things as delights that adults don't, or have forgotten how to do.
Can't you picture a little boy singing "Jingle Bells" to a plastic Jesus in a store?
Christmas often comes in precious moments like this, when we spontaneously show our adoration for the Baby in the manger.
5. SHARE THE SPIRIT OF CHRISTMAS WITH SOMEONE ELSE:
Nothing multiplies the sense of wonder in your life like giving it away.
The more you share (not just things, but yourself) the brighter Christmas grows.I hope that these simple steps will help you, or someone you can share these with, keep the wonder and excitement of Christmas alive during this busy season.
Just remember that"Jesus is the reason for the season."
When it comes to counting blessings,
There are surely very few
As precious and as meaningful
as someone dear as you,
And that's the special reason
For this loving Christmas prayer...
God bless you
for your thoughtfulness
And keep you in His care