advent: waiting, hoping and watching

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Advent
. Something that has grabbed hold of my curiosity in the last few years and I am learning to create and implement my own advent traditions and practices. When my roommate said she wanted to do an advent calendar I volunteered to compile it and get the scripture readings and crafty part going. As we began to piece things together and hang yarn, getting our craft theme moving, roomie#3 delightfully offered to fill them with treats! We started off by having cozy socks for the first day and have moved onto the second and third days this week. I wanted to compile and share some of the resources that I found helpful in creating this special advent calendar project to both focus on the true meaning and celebrate throughout the month! I’ve begun posting the daily readings that I selected for each day.

I found some great resources to help guide me through the season of Advent. This excerpt from Glenn Packiam’s blog is a great description of understanding the true meaning of Advent.

Advent as a season is meant to make the journey toward Christmas full of meaning; it’s meant to put us touch with our deepest longings and greatest hopes; it’s meant to teach us to bring all our desires together on one object: Christ. While “Christmas” as a season (properly) begins on December 25 and goes twelve days (yes, there’s a song about that!) until January 6th, Advent is all about the build-up to it. It begins on the fourth Sunday before Christmas and takes us right up to the glorious celebration of the incarnation.

When you journey through Advent to Christmas, you begin to see Jesus more fully. You recognize that His incarnation was the beginning of the redemption of the world and that His return is thecompletion of it. Advent pulls those two moments together. It overlays  the joy of His arrival as a helpless babe with the hope of His appearing as conquering King. Both arrivals are anticipated in celebrating Advent.

This second resource by Mark D. Roberts was a great help in compiling the theme and verses for our advent calendar. {project with pictures coming soon!}

Beginning with the 4 weeks of advent-candle scripture and themes I began selecting the verses by pulling from these mentioned and other web resources with advent scriptures. I started with the weekly themes to guide my verses, pulling the verses from the Mark D. Roberts link I mentioned. Adding everything to a spreadsheet as I gathered everything together.

Starting on the First Sunday in December (often referred to as the Fourth Sunday before Christmas):

  1. Waiting for the Shepherd
  2. Waiting for Forgiveness
  3. Waiting with Joy
  4. Waiting for the Son

And on December 25th the Wait is over!

How do you celebrate the advent season leading up to Christmas? Do you have any special family traditions to mark the waiting?

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