In December 2013 we were anticipating our move to South Africa, fast forward two years and we’re waiting for our first trip home to Scotland. Waiting doesn’t get any easier, even after 9 months practice this year waiting for Our Wee Man.
Today is the first Sunday in Advent, a season all about waiting. Waiting and hoping. Last year I really appreciated the opportunity to choose how to prepare for Christmas, rather than have it dictated to me by advertising and hype. With the hurt and pain in our world, Advent is as relevant as ever, taking time to acknowledge the darkness while anticipating the light.
The classic way to mark Advent is with an advent calendar and my mum brought us a lovely fairtrade chocolate one. Ethical dilemma, we’ve given up chocolate for 2015, but it’d be such a shame to let it go to waste…
Last year I enjoyed doodling on a ‘Praying in Colour‘ advent calendar. The free printables give a helpful space to centre yourself in reflection & prayer each day.
This year I will also be reading the daily reflections from ‘In the Valley of the Shadow Light has Dawned‘ by Stephanie Ebert. It’s an inexpensive ebook filled with lovely, poetic thoughts and questions to ponder on. I appreciate Stephanie’s honesty, she doesn’t shy away from the darkness in our world. Yet there is a shining thread of hope throughout; reminders of Shalom peace and God with us. Plus Stephanie writes with insight about our South African context.
December often becomes a blur of shopping and celebrating. However I would encourage you to create some space to reflect and anticipate the Kingdom come, ushered in by the birth of a baby.
Other Advent Thoughts:
Rachel Held Evans’ 26 Ideas for Advent
Sarah Bessey is posting thoughts each Sunday in Advent: