Whoa, there! Slow down, everyone. It’s not the Christmas season yet. It’s Advent. Don’t rush things! The Christmas season doesn’t officially start until December 25, when we celebrate the birth of Jesus. Christmas then continues for 12 more days (THE Twelve Days of Christmas, sound familiar?) until Epiphany, the celebration of when the Magi visited the baby Jesus. We are now in Advent, not Christmas!
Please don’t think I am anti-Christmas. Far from it! I LOVE Christmas, and all of the traditions that go along with it (well, maybe not ALL… that elf that moves around at night is kind of creepy). But please don’t skip over Advent. It is a beautiful season, too. Use this time to prepare for the celebration of the Savior’s birth. What were people expecting in a Messiah? What signs and prophesies were fulfilled? Why do we even need a Savior? Advent should be a time of focusing on our faith journey. It’s not a crime to deck the halls, but don’t let it overshadow this special season.
Use this Advent season wisely. Pray more. Go to Church. Explore the Bible. Feed the hungry and clothe the needy. Visit the homebound and elderly. Live out your faith. I’m not a Bible scholar, but I don’t think Jesus ever said, “Good prices on electronics come to those whose who wait in a line for 20 hours.”
I once heard some wonderful advice with regards to the crazy pre-Christmas rush: “If what you are doing doesn’t bring you closer to Jesus, then don’t do it.” Pray for me, friends, as I try to follow those wise words, and know that I will be praying for you, too.