Advent: On Purpose

 Photo credit: Anna Dziubinska

Photo credit: Anna Dziubinska

It’s a bit ironic, isn’t it, that on Thursday many of us give thanks for all that we have, convinced that we have an abundance, but the very next day we go a bit crazy trying to acquire more stuff, as if we didn’t have enough.  This is the kick-off to the Christmas shopping season, according to the retailers.

From here until Christmas, life will get hectic and overwhelming for many, all while we try to create or experience moments that would look good on a Christmas card. 

But Advent, which begins on Sunday (and not on Black Friday), is meant to be a season of waiting and anticipation.  A season where we recognize our longings and our hopes.  It’s meant to be a time when we see the deepest needs of our world and hope beyond hope that there is good news to be heard on Christmas morning.

…Augustine argued that human beings are story-shaped people, stretched between what ought to be and what will be. In our imaginings, in our longings, at our best and at our worst, we are people whose identities are formed by a narrative that begins at the beginning and ends at the ending…
— Steven Garber
 Photo credit: Chelsea Francis

Photo credit: Chelsea Francis

Advent is one of the best times of the year for us to remember our identity as it’s shaped by this narrative…yet it’s also one of the hardest because we so easily get sucked into the story our culture tells—a story of busyness and materialism.

To help shape my Advent this year, to help me remember which Story I want to tell and be identified by, I’m committing to blogging two to three times each week until Christmas.

On Sundays I’ll offer a short reflection and a prayer to accompany the lighting of the Advent candle.  Later in the week I’ll offer some thoughts and a prayer on living intentionally during Advent.  My goal is to keep these posts short and devotional in nature, so that you can use them in your practice of prayer and reflection.

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