My sweet great-aunt in Germany emails me each weekend with lovely pictures – today I am sharing the one above with some greetings for the 2nd Sunday of the Advent season!
This means CHRISTMAS IS GETTING CLOSER!!
December has now come … the days ahead (at least here) are forecasted to become colder … the festive lights of Christmas decor are everywhere! I’ve gotten a few cards in the mail already. There is no stopping the Christmas season … and I am preparing my heart – and my head – for the days ahead:
1. At the beginning of the month, we are facing a flurry of parties and activities. There are numerous functions at church and at school – several parties and dinners to attend, a choir cantata, bell ringing for the Salvation Army, school band/choir concert, etc. While these activities are a lot of fun, I hope the stress won’t overwhelm me and make me lose the joy of the season! My goal is to keep my calendar updated and accurate – to plan ahead & to be prepared.
2. Everyone has their own way of shopping for Christmas gifts – some start shopping the day after Christmas and others wait until the last minute. I’m somewhere in the middle – but this year, I’m thinking gift giving is going to be simple but meaningful. What exactly that entails, I’m still working on and thinking about … mostly it has be to cost effective. The same goes for my Christmas cards – I am not sure who, when, and if I’ll get them out this year, but I hope I find some inspiration. Soon!
3. As school closes for the Christmas Break later this month, I am looking forward to rest, relaxation, reflection, and renewal!! The older I get, the less being busy appeals to me; spending quiet days at home or out with family and close friends is what I plan to enjoy most during that time. I also want this time to be meaningful for my children. While they do have their “wish list” of presents, I think TIME is the best gift one can give their children!!
4. Lastly, I hope I will remember to find ways to reach out to others. So often over the years as I’ve taught in various children’s ministries, I have taught the J-O-Y concept: true joy comes from putting Jesus first – then Others – and lastly, Yourself. I am a serious introvert for the most part, so I have to purposefully find ways to step outside my comfort zone … but I want to be selfless enough to be willing to do this. I am praying about opportunities and ideas of how to accomplish this – as well as to be an example to my children that life isn’t just about our own little world.