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November 28, 2011

Thanksgiving is over, and the Christmas season has officially begun. Advent is the season leading up to Christmas, beginning four Sundays before December 25. The first week of Advent actually started yesterday, Sunday, November 27. The word Advent means “coming” or “arrival.” Christmas is the celebration of Jesus’ first coming—His birth 2,000 years ago. As believers in Christ, we eagerly anticipate His second coming.


For the four weeks of Advent, Christians focus on remembering the thousands of years that God’s people in the Old Testament anticipated the coming of God’s salvation, Jesus. Advent is not merely something to be learned about during Sunday morning church services; it can be celebrated in your home with your family, as well. Focus your family on the true meaning of Advent and Christmas: Jesus! Encourage your family to connect through worship, Scripture reading, and prayer. There are many Advent activities—choose one that is best for your family.

    • Jesse Tree. My family is going to be creating a Jesse Tree this year. Each night, starting on December 1, we will read a passage of Scripture, starting in Genesis with creation and ending (on Christmas Eve) with the birth of Jesus. You can print out symbols (clip art) to coincide with the Scripture passages, hanging one onto your tree each night. This website gives instructions on how to make a Jesse Tree and has the clip art and Scripture passages.
    • Advent Calendar. There are many Advent calendars to buy, from $1 ones filled with chocolate to more expensive heirlooms to use year after year. The important part is to spend time as a family, reading God’s Word, and praying.
    • Advent Wreath. Light a candle each Sunday of Advent and read a passage of Scripture with your family.
    • Weekly Devotionals. If you are looking for family devotionals for each Sunday of Advent, LifeWay Christian Resources has family devotionals with Scripture and ways to share, evaluate, encourage, and express what you’ve learned. The first week can be found here.
    • Make It Simple. Make the Advent season personal to your family. Perhaps it’s not a Jesse Tree or an Advent calendar. Before dinner time, read one passage of Scripture and sing your favorite Christmas carol. Create memories that focus on Jesus and are special to your family!

Even though Advent started yesterday, it is never too late for your family to begin the celebration! With joy, excitement, and thankfulness, your family can anticipate the coming celebration of Christ’s birth!

3 Comments leave one →
  1. November 28, 2011 10:23 am

    Thank you, Christie. This information has blessed me today. It is an answer to prayer. Thank you for listing all these easy ways to place the emphasis on “Christ” in Christmas. I am printing this out now!!!

    PS I appreciate the last idea, “Make it simple.” Thank you for that. If I can do nothing else, I CAN do what you suggest there.

    • November 28, 2011 11:05 am

      Rachel, I’m so glad this was helpful! The desire to focus our families on Christ is great, but sometimes pulling it all together is overwhelming. I know God will bless any efforts of focusing on Him!


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