Tuesday, December 01, 2015

Finding joy in the waiting {Advent 2015}

There's something really wonderful about this time of the year.
 The lights. 
The music. 
The fun.  It's just exciting!  I love everything about this time of the year (except the cranky crowds. . but we won't go there).  Today marked the official start of Advent and I am just giddy with anticipation as we attempt to daily prepare ourselves for the celebration of Christ's birth.

It is an exciting time as we focus on teaching our two boys what Christmas is all about.  As I sit back (ignoring the long to-do list that eagerly awaits my attention) and reflect on this month's activities, I am drawn to the quiet anticipation that brings unmistakable joy.

Joy that isn't found from presents under the tree or checking items off our Christmas bucket list. It comes in spending time with each other, listening to our 7 year old read from the Bible and watching our 4 year old hear the same stories with new understanding.  The joy is from Christ.  That is the greatest gift of all. 

This year, is the 5th year (I think?) that we have used Truth in the Tinsel and it hasn't gotten old.  Ethan has been reminding me for a few week's now to start getting them ready.  I love how he looks forward with excitement and enthusiasm.  It's contagious.  Especially, when I am tired and wondering if we will even have time to do this at all, after all, he is in school an hour longer now.  I am motivated by my children's desire to celebrate Christ.  They are excited and even though there are nights when I am tired and overwhelmed, its simplicity (especially since I prepare the the lessons ahead of time), make it so easy! 

So, as we wait eagerly for Christmas morning and find baby Jesus in the manger wrapped under the tree, I encourage you to not become overwhelmed, but to sit and soak in the quiet anticipation of Advent.  My quiet may look different than many of yours (there may have been lego mini figures going to battle while Ethan read from Isaiah tonight), but between the things you see around all of the social media outlets that may just drive you to pull out your hair and throw your white flag of surrender up and not do anything, I encourage you to find that one thing that brings you and your family together to focus on Christ and his birth. 

You can read herehere, here and here for more on how we do Truth in the Tinsel and advent. 

Click here to download your own copy. . . it's not too late to start!  You can even do 5 or 10 when you are on Christmas vacation! 

Also, check out this option for the Jesse Tree or this book. . . it's awesome! 

Happy first day of Advent! 

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