Mail the Christmas cards. Untangle the lights and decorate the tree. Buy gifts. Wrap the gifts. Buy more wrapping paper to finish wrapping the gifts. Find that cookie recipe and make a grocery list. Clean the house for the holiday party. Clean the house after the party. Pack your bags, hop in the car, catch a flight…over the hills and through the woods to grandmother’s house we go!
'Tis the season to give, and Christmas sure can give us a rather long and overwhelming to-do list. Although most items bring cheer into our lives and allow us to reconnect with those we love, and many are rooted in dear traditions and memories, it is easy to get trapped in the go-go-go of Christmas. Often unintentionally, we leave little extra space for things that help us have an attentive, nourishing, and reflective season.
In conjunction with our sermon series on “Advent and the Prince of Peace” beginning this Sunday, the blog posts during December will focus on spiritual practices that encourage us to keep space for peace as we anticipate the birth of Christ. The reflections and practical tips on Stillness, Prayer, Generosity, and Worship will help us discover and cultivate peace within ourselves, our relationships, our community, and our world.
May this prayer written by Monica Wiederkehr ready our hearts for the Advent season:
Sacred is the pause that draws us into stillness.
Nourishing are the moments when we step away from busyness.
Teach us the wisdom of pausing.
Reveal to us the goodness of stopping to breathe.
Bring to our memory the truth that we are the temple
out of which you pour your gifts into the world.
We are the temple from which you sing your songs.
We are the temple out of which you bless.
Enable us to listen to the renewal you are trying to bring about in us and through us.