Remember that for the traditional Church calendar this was not a flurry of festive activity, but a reflective time. Set apart for focusing on the powerful import of the nativity: God sending his son to earth, fulfilling the promises for salvation.
For today, choose one of the past devotionals; each one has a description of its theme and focus.
- Elements of Advent Looking at the spiritual foundation of Christmas, represented by the manger.
- The Candle of Hope Centering on the message of hope in the lighting of the first candle. Additionally, taking the first Jesse tree symbol, the sprouted tree stump, and its scripture verse for the day.
Set up the Jesse tree, the Advent wreath, or your log. Place the candles, and during devotional time, light the first candle. Begin the Christmas season by allowing meditation and reflection time in the schedule of days ahead. Take each day at a time.
This year, I discovered the Celtic Advent Calendar idea which has simple suggestions for experiencing joy, and would like to use that inspiration to encourage this. experience through small acts.
While singing carols is a very old tradition, most Christmas carols derive from the nineteenth century. Even those which sound like older forms of music like chants and plainsong, are actually more modern.
For today, the song “O Come, O come Emmanuel” ushers in our celebration. The melody is based in a 15th century Franciscan chant.