Often I think we busy ourselves with all of the hustle and bustle of the holiday season...so much so that preparing for advent becomes more about buying and decorating and wrapping and cooking rather than preparing for the the coming.
I've made a real effort this year to keep all of the distractions of material things out of my way. I have really focused on His arrival.
Having a seven year old boy has made this even more important. I don't want him to ever think Christmas is about only the taking, because it's so much more than that.
Preparing for advent is about preparing our hearts for the coming down of the Christ child. HE is the only eternal gift that matters.
I have decorated the tree and the mantle, but at the center of it all is the Christ child, who I look forward to receiving.
My son and I have talked extensively this year about what it means to give unselfishly...whole heartedly to others without expecting anything in return. Isn't that the way God did? And isn't that the way we should be?
So while the lights twinkle and the shiny balls reflect our faces, I am in constant prayer that my heart is a reflection of HIM...not of me or what I have or wish I had...just of HIM and His grace.
Mary took the task of carrying Him and holding Him, and ultimately giving Him up. That sacrifice is more than my pea brain can absorb. Her faith and determination to be obedient is another part of what advent is to me.
It is a time of rededicating myself to God...to His plan for me.
And so I wait...I wait with an open heart for the arrival of this Child who loves me, who came without fanfare or parades. He came as a poor child in a dusty stable full of love and grace. That same baby will soon arrive again. I simply can't wait!