So I thought I was doing so much better with the jet-lag thing this time around, but maybe not. This morning I was awake at 4:00, up at 4:30 and out the door at 5:00. Problem is my Starbucks doesn’t open til 5:30. So I walked the long way, through the dark silent streets of my neighborhood, most folks still snuggled in their warm beds, dreaming of sugar plums or something.
It was cold and crisp and as my breath showed up in white wisps, it gave me a chance to pray and to reflect on the upcoming Advent season.
The silence and peace of the early morning was such a contrast to the noise, and hurry that can dominate this season when we long for the “heavenly peace” of Silent Night – to be preparing for Jesus.
It got me to thinking…What do you want for Advent this year? What do you love about Advent? What are your hopes? How do you make choices instead of allowing the world to squeeze you into its mold? I wrote last week about having a plan.
So, two questions that lead to choices around Advent:
- What are the things that bring stress and draw you away from Jesus? What prompts you to be the worst version of yourself?
Noise? Bright lights? T.V, computer, to-do lists?
2. What are the activities that are meaningful? What draws you towards Jesus?
For me, turning off the t.v. and turning on soft Christmas music; turning off the lights and lighting candles, a walk outside to look at the stars and quiet Bible reading are all important.
Often we say, “There’s no way! I have KIDS! I have OBLIGATIONS!” But I think we have more choices than we admit.
Sometimes joy takes the discipline of saying “no” to something good in order to say “yes” to something even better.
So what’s your plan? You can do it! What are you going to say “no” to? What life-giving practices are you going to put on your calendar?
Sometimes it takes getting creative and inviting kids into some of the quiet along with us.
And sometimes they’re the ones who invite us.
One day when our daughter Katy was not yet 2, I was scurrying around in the week before Christmas and I felt a tug on my hand. “Mommy. Come.” She pulled me over to the manger scene that was set up on our hearth.
“Sit. Stay. Watch.” she said.
How are you planning to watch for Jesus?