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Advent: Shedding Light in Advent

Getting Ready for Christmas

            ^Spiritually

Advent Devotions for 2011

Quick.  Someone asks you if you’re ready for Christmas, how do you respond?  If you’re like most people I know, your answer has something to do with the number of gifts you have left to buy, whether your tree is up, and your house decorated.  We may wear pins that declare that Jesus is the reason for the season, but have we taken the time to examine that, believe it, and live it?

 I’d like to suggest that this year:

-Let’s not get to Christmas eve and realize we’ve spent way more time and energy on the trappings of the holiday and not really looked at what scripture has to say to us about this Holy Time.

-We’re told that Mary pondered all these things in her heart, then when things were unsure or unsettled she had the ammo to spiritually get back on track.  Can we afford to be less prepared?

 As we consider being properly prepared, let’s make sure:

-That our mind is on board

-That our heart is at peace

-That our spirit is primed

-That we are strong in purpose.

11-27-11 Romans 13:11-14  It’s later than you think.

Have you ever had one of those mornings that start out all wrong when your alarm doesn’t go off?  Or have you awoken on an important birthday or anniversary only to wonder where the time got to?  And I’m not sure how many procrastinate when it comes to preparing taxes, but each year I seem to hear more and more people moaning that April 15th got there way before they were ready.

 A friend recently asked me what I wished I could do. More than anything, I wish I could be a hospice chaplain.  Typically, folks who are aware that the end is near are more honestly dealing with the time that they have.  They have truly awakened to the fact that there isn’t much time left, so they don’t waste it.  Why do we wait so long to begin living on purpose, living in the moment, living awake to what is here and now?

 I believe it was John Wesley who was asked if he knew he had a short amount of time left to live if he would change anything and his answer was no.  I’m not sure I’ve reached that level of spiritual, emotional, or rational maturity.  What would happen, though, if we began living with the realization that it really is later than we think? 

 As you begin this journey into Advent, I would invite you to invest in each day.  I would suggest that you don’t put off doing or saying the things you need to do or say.  Give now.  Love now.  Live now.  Each day, pray the Psalmist’s prayer: Teach me to make the most of my time, so that I may grow in wisdom (see Psalm 90:12).  Amen.

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