Okay, so it’s not beginning to look a lot like Christmas – it’s already here!
Our family LOVES Christmas! Yours probably does, too.
There is something I seem to struggle with every year. It usually hits me more after Christmas, but I do think of it during the season. I always feel a bit guilty when Christmas day has come and have a sense that I have not fully used the Advent season to prepare myself or my children for recognizing the reality or significance of celebrating the birth of Christ. I have great intentions of doing meaningful, simple Advent devotions with my kids, but somehow I don’t follow through as I had intended.
This year, we have taken a different approach to helping our children focus on preparing their hearts for Christmas. Many times, we have this feeling that we need to help our children take their focus off of some of the Christmassy things around them – “it’s not all about the trees and lights and presents and candy canes.” While that may be true, those things can point us towards the true meaning of Christmas, working to help prepare our hearts and minds, remembering why we are celebrating. So, rather than trying to shift their focus away from the things around them, we chose to spend time focussing on the Christmas decorations and symbols in order to teach our girls and give them reminders all around them to help them remember why we celebrate the birth of Jesus. We talk about the tree, the wreaths, the lights, candy canes, Santa, stockings, Christmas carols…all of it. We have done that before, little books or stories that tell about them, but doing it intentionally to help the girls use the sights and sounds around them to point to celebrating Jesus has helped us connect to the “Christmasness” around them.
This has already been such a blessing to us! Though family devotions and prayer time is not new to us, this Christmas time has been refreshing and fun!
I cannot do justice to all the amazing resources out there, so I won’t even attempt to do so. But I will say that taking some time to be in the season has already helped us to slow down and enjoy all the sights and sounds around us. We hope you are enjoying all that God has to offer you this season – soak up the sights and sounds around you and find joy.