Posted by: Beth | November 1, 2021

Thanksgiving Advent

Ok, so there’s really no generally recognized thing “Thanksgiving Advent.”  There’s the Thanksgiving holiday.  There is the Christian season of Advent, which begins on Thanksgiving or the following Sunday and ends on Christmas.  I like the idea of celebrating Epiphany, if for no other reason it stretches the holiday season another twelve days. It also gives me a good reason to leave the tree up until January 6.  Lest you think I’m overly into Christmas decorations, we tend to put the tree up the Saturday before Christmas.  But I have digressed …. Again … imagine that.

As I sit here in the morning quiet, knowing I will soon hear “How much candy can I have today?” (which really means “I’m going to eat as much as I can before breakfast.”), I think ahead.  We had a very busy October.  I had to write teeny-tiny to get everything on the calendar. I have resolved to make very few appointments during November.  We need to get some things done around the house and we need some time to just be.  And then will come December.  Decades ago when we first home schooled our children, I thought, “Whew!  Now the calendar won’t be so packed in May and December.”  I was wrong.  Where the children are educated has only a small impact on the overall number of activities available.

I have scrolled a little through social media.  People are putting up Christmas trees.  Others are in a camp I was in for much of my life: Can we PLEASE get past Thanksgiving before we dive into Christmas?  Then I was in a business that necessitated planning for Christmas in July and putting it out for customers in November and … you get the idea … I had to get over waiting until December to think about Christmas. 

I have again digressed.  Or maybe not.

Because this kind of thing happens to many of us.  We want to take time to be grateful.  Yet so many things call (or scream) for our attention. 

Many books and online resources are available to assist Christians in preparing their hearts for Christmas.  To encourage taking time to think about more than the gifts we get and the activities we are doing.  For most people, observing Advent ends up being one more thing to check off the list in a season that is already too busy.

So what if we start today?  What if, instead of packing our calendars full for the next two months, we start today?  What if today we do one thing to help us focus on the eternal?  Or if you happen not to believe in the eternal, to focus on the universe and all those in it?

That’s the one thing for today.  Think about that.  Will it make any difference in my life, or anyone else’s, if I take a few moments today to focus on others?   I may run an errand for someone.  I may make a phone call. I may pray with someone. I may answer a call I would otherwise ignore.  Will I take time to stop and really listen to my spouse, my friend, my child, my parent? 

Activities.  Gratitude.  Anticipating a holiday.  They’re all entangled.  May we balance them well.

#bgwww21  #bgta21

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