Advent provides us with an opportunity to look at life with spiritual eyes. Sense Light breaking through our darkness.
Focus our attention on the Messianic marvel in our midst. Love Himself abiding with us, as one of us, taking on frail flesh.
[bctt tweet=”Advent signals an inner awakening, a deepening awareness of God’s Presence.”]
And it helps to have a few selected resources at hand to help make it personally meaningful and applicable.
The Godspace blog has a whole host of great ideas to help you get into the right mind-set during Advent and beyond.
Here’s a selection of resources it offers:
- Advent photo challenge
- Worship resources
- Celebrate with simplicity
- Advent/Christmas music from a rich array of traditions
- Discerning our way through Advent
- Choosing your Scripture readings for the coming year
The video below encourages us to lean toward the light of Christ..
Book suggestions (based on the Kindle version unless otherwise stated):
‘Sacred Space:For Advent and the Christmas season 2015’ by the Irish Jesuits – offers daily Scripture reading and a reflection to invite the reader into a closer relationship with God. Each day begins with something to read and think about, consciously sensing the presence of God, exploring the freedom He offers, followed by a Scripture reading and reflective prayer.
‘God is in the Manger:Reflections on Advent and Christmas’ by Dietrich Bonhoeffer – 40 devotions on waiting and mystery, redemption, incarnation and joy. Includes short excerpts from Bonhoeffer’s letters and passages from his Christmas sermons.
‘Touching Wonder:Recapturing the Awe of Christmas’ by John Blase – A bold retelling of Luke 1-2 based on The Message translation, accompanied by John Blase’s poetic storytelling reflections in the form of multiple, intimate first-person narratives. This will be my third year of getting lost in the wonder as conveyed here in earthy reality.
‘Reflections for Advent 2015’ by Maggi Dawn, Barbara Mosse and Sam Wells – a daily devotional companion of varied reflections (based on the Common Worship Lectionary readings for Morning Prayer) utilising the practice of lectio divina. It encourages a deeper look at our lives and invites us closer into the heart of God.
‘Waiting on the Word:A poem a day for Advent, Christmas and Epiphany’ by Malcolm Guite (paperback) – offers us a daily poem to read and reflect on. It’s an eclectic selection with poetry from diverse voices such as Metaphysical poets John Donne and George Herbert and contemporary poets Luci Shaw and Scott Cairns, beautifully woven together with some of Malcolm’s own superb sonnets and theological thoughts. I’m a huge fan of his and can’t wait to dive into this!
‘Resilient:Your Invitation to a Jesus-Shaped Life’ by Sheridan Voysey – not strictly an Advent resource but its message takes us beyond welcoming Jesus in the manger to seeing how to live well in the light of His coming. With a steady focus on the Beatitudes, the author reveals a clear-eyed view of the way to incorporate its truth into daily life.
Last but not least, you might like to access some on-line Advent devotionals you can watch or listen to, such as Dr Micha Jazz’s weekly talks with Premier Christian Radio, read a weekly devotional with Lifeway, or listen to Advent videos, podcasts and more from the Ignatian Spirituality site.
And if all of this sounds too much like hard work, just relax, breathe gently and maybe…
- Light a candle or two
- Sit and reflect on a Bible passage
- Pray and meditate in silence
- Listen to some music that draws you closer to God
- Rest in His presence
- Give thanks
- Look for the light you can see
[bctt tweet=”Advent is about sensing the wonder of Christ’s incarnate presence with us.”]
Whatever you choose to do during Advent, please remember God loves you very much and His greatest desire is for you to draw closer to Him.