Isn’t it wonderful? All this preparation for celebrating the Light of the world? I’m so incredibly thankful that God sent His beloved Son, Jesus, to us– and I enjoy celebrating the birth of the Savior!
But, it’s also easy to get sideswiped by planning, parties, shopping… it can become a distraction at best, and a diversion (even an obstacle) at worst.
How can we keep our focus centered on Jesus?
Here are a few ideas for you that I’ve found helpful (these are all non-affiliate links):
Family Advent Ideas
- Truth in the Tinsel. If you’re looking for an Advent activity to keep your children’s minds on the Christmas story, check out Truth in the Tinsel. It’s a wonderful four week study for elementary aged kids (and even older siblings who might want to join in) with enjoy fun, simple crafts. Each day has a Bible reading and then an ornament is made to help the kids remember the lesson.
- Redeeming the Season. This is a great book to have on hand with lots of ideas on how you can keep your family’s focus on celebrating the Savior’s birth. It’s filled with simple ideas and practical tips. I pull this one out almost every Christmas to glean ideas and refresh my memory.
- Advent Angels: A Christmastime Game. This is a family game that I played as a child and have now passed down to my family. The post I’ve linked to explains the simple game that helps keep the focus on giving and serving rather than receiving. My kids love this game. (I do, too!)
- Advent Activities and Christmas Crafts. This is a great post from DoNotDepart.com with links to various helpful resources!
Personal Advent Study Preparation
- Then Came Jesus. If you’re looking for a Bible study to do, look into Lara Williams’ 4-week study that reminds us “to press deeper into our God so that when December 25th rolls around we won’t regret; we’ll rejoice. Because we’ve walked into the season hand-in-hand with Jesus.” Amen! I love her words and her heart for Jesus! (This study also includes an optional “family idea” each day for leading the family into Advent.)
- Advent Reading Plans from Bible.com (YouVersion). If you have a smartphone, you probably know about the Bible app by YouVersion. If you don’t have a smartphone, no worries, because you can make an account online and participate there. They have several great Advent plans to choose from, and if you feel like you’ve gotten a late start, don’t fret! There are lots of plans that are shorter than the traditional Advent season to help you focus. Just type in “Christmas” to see other, shorter plans.
- Praise cards. I love these simple, printable praise cards to help us keep our thoughts praise-filled rather than stress-filled when our days get busy with preparations! They’re also offered from DoNotDepart and this month’s theme is Uncommon Gifts. The focus is on learning from those who gladly gave at the first coming of Christ to earth.
So, there ya go– just a few little ideas, tips, and resources to help and encourage you to remember the real Reason we celebrate… Jesus!!!
Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel,
because he has come and has redeemed his people! (Luke 1:68, ESV)
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. (Luke 2:11)
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. (Luke 2:14, KJV)
What sorts of things do you do to keep your focus on Christ during Advent and Christmas? I’d love to hear!
Happy Advent to you and yours…