Preparing for Christmas - Advent
I am tried just thinking about it.
I was going to go to bed at a reasonable time tonight. I still might make it if this little post is short enough and i do not make too many typographical errors.
But as I juggle emails even as late as now and the latest in the news, I feel required to state that while the media and the stores want all of us in the Christmas mood, the actual season is ADVENT not Christmas.
Why be a spoil sport you ask? It is about putting us in good spirits, you say. Don't be a Grinch or a Scrooge, you exclaim!
But that is just the point. I want us all to enjoy each in its own turn.
What is Advent?
Advent is the season of preparation for the coming of Christ, both in Christmas and in the end. It is a time to reflect on the last things - death, judgment, heaven, hell. Okay, I will admit that no one wants to think about those four last things, which is precisely why the Church asks us to do so.
Consider WHY did Jesus Christ become a little baby. It was not so Hallmark could sell sentimental cards or WalMart could have midnight madness sales. Why was Christ born - to redeem us from our sinful state; to restore man's relationship with God the Father, to show us what true love is.
Thus the Church calls on us to reflect on these higher thoughts, thee profound truths, the noble sentiments and to prepare our hearts to receive the infant Savior.
So while there is no getting around the shopping and the noise and the parties, take a moment each day and reflect on the real reason for the season. Whatever your faith, realize that we have been given a great gift that allows us the time and energy to consider the love God has for all of us - and that He sent His only begotten Son to save us from our sins.
Let us appreciate and be grateful for the mercy God has shown us. Let us be kind toward our neighbor and help those in need. Let us look inside and make a firm decision to amend our lives, so that anyone who sees us would say - there goes an instrument of God's love in the world.
For daily Scripture readings that you can access from your mobile phone, consider downloading the free App for Laudate. Otherwise get your scripture daily readings here.
Enjoy the season of anticipation. Do not forget the expectation that comes with the wonder of it all.
And as my father is famous for saying - pay attention to your family, to your friends, the reason why we are all here.
A Blessed Advent to you all.