How to do Advent?

So many experiences come together at this season.  The  light decreases as we descend towards the year’s midwinter turning point.  The increasing frenzy of the retail season is hard to avoid as it seeks to draw us ever earlier into the whirl.   The church’s calendar invites us to prepare for the coming of God in the infant Jesus while at the same time speaking of judgment and the end times.     Making time and space for reflection is doubly hard at such a busy time and all the more necessary. 

So here’s an idea which a friend has shared.  How about giving PRESENCE this Christmas?  She asks ‘What would it look like to put a little LESS energy into ticking off things on our to-do lists…and put a little MORE energy into giving/gifting our full presence to ourselves, our loved ones, strangers, and God?’ 

We can start this very moment by taking a slow breath, fully taking in our surroundings and opening ourselves to God and to the next person we meet.  It’s a prescription that can change the whole day and if taken regularly, the whole season of Advent.   

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