I found these little guys last week. They were just chilling in a store, waiting to be bought. It reminded me that Easter is coming, that in what seems to be a blink of an eye the major stores have gone from Christmas cheer to Easter extravaganza. The decorations, chocolates, gifts and cards are everywhere.
We have a family tradition of celebrating Christmas by preparing for the day with a series of Advent readings and fun candy induced activities with the children. We have had less success with establishing an Easter tradition. Some of you will have given up something for lent, or maybe you are doing something and paying it forward as a way of remembering the Easter story. I think we are still distracted by the year starting that I haven’t quite noticed that it is almost three months in.
How do you prepare for Easter with your family? Are you creating something special? Do you bake? Do you gather with your family and friends? Looking forward to hearing about your ideas.
Well my my, I think this is one of the first years I have managed to do a complete overhaul of the Christmas shopping and wrap presents for all the cousins and small people. There is still a lot to do. My man asked me if he could help – nah, not really. He has also asked if I need to do all the Christmas jobs I set myself. Like Christmas baking, making an advent calendar, plan a family Advent activity, prepare cards and notes and handmade gifts for teachers, music teachers, ballet teachers, rowing coaches, the crossing lady and so on. Well, I think the answer is yes.
Christmas is about Jesus’ birth. One day a year I can go for the whole “let me tell you about Jesus” thing with abandon. I need to make the most of this opportunity and help to encourage friends, family and community to SLOW down as we rest and reflect on why Jesus’ birth is so special. That makes me feel good.
Perhaps you grew up without advent just like me. We celebrated Christmas with gusto – tree, santa, presents and good food. But the whole concept of advent is about preparation, an anticipation of what is to come…..and I don’t remember the deliberate, thoughtful consideration of Christ at Christmas. Maybe we thought it was too Catholic, at the very least too ritualistic. But as I grow in years I grow in the knowledge that whatever I can do to help my children anticipate Christ’s birth is a blessing.
This season of Advent is of course about the coming of the person and work of Jesus. And how I make this a reality for my children is the challenge.
“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” Isaiah 7:14.
The intention behind recognizing Advent is to think about:
promise, rebellion, sin, death, deliverance, anticipation, preparation, hope, joy and the second coming of Jesus.