"What is Advent? Simply put, the arrival. The arrival which changed and saved the world..."
Well Thanksgiving is over, and once again it was a dozzie. My wife and I believe this might have been our best ever. In any event, the day went well, and we continue to munch on leftover turkey.
With Thanksgiving over, are we are ready for the hustle and bustle of getting ready for Christmas? The shopping, cooking, more shopping, decorating, office parties, and on and on and on. This is what some refer to as the busy season - others might refer to it as the "tweener" (as in in-between) season. Still others appropriately call this season Advent.
What is Advent? Some churches practice it and others may not. First off, it has been around since the 6th century. It may not be defined as Advent in the Bible, but it still makes very good sense for us to acknowledge. What Advent means is simply the "arrival". It is getting ready for the arrival of God, becoming man, and then being born unto a young woman in a stable. It is preparing for this arrival, the arrival of Christ. We do so by preparing our hearts and minds for the upcoming celebration of Christmas. That is all. It is as simple as that. And today is the first day of Advent.
I know, I know. Easier said than done. Just so I don't sound like too much of a hypocrite, I have done more than my fair share of stressing in Christmas' past. Some Christmas seasons became almost secondary to the material preparation. I had zero time to prepare my heart and mind. It was a mad dash to the finish line of 4pm on the 24th of December. I can't change how I was in the past, but I can sure change how I act in the future.
This Advent season, my wife and I are committed to buy less, decorate less, stress less and worship more. In the new movie America, Dinesh D'Souza asks us to "imagine the world without America". It would be very bleak, and I agree with him. What if we took that thought even further and asked, "Jesus - imagine the world without Him". I can't. Without Jesus, the world would be unimaginable - and without hope.