November 26, 2020
I remember being so proud as my dad, dressed up in his suit and tie, walked me up in front of the congregation. My sparkly dress caught the light of the brass candlesticks as we moved down the aisle. My mom held a bible, marked at Luke 2, and my siblings marched next to me. We were chosen – the family the pastor asked to light the advent candles. It was a special role and I felt honored. To this day those moments of lighting the purple and pink candles are some of my sweetest holiday memories.
How Do We Actually Do Advent With Our Family?
Yet maybe like me you sometimes don’t know where to begin. You want to do it, but how exactly?
You wonder how to communicate the concepts of hope, love, joy, and peace in a way that makes sense to your family. Or maybe you’ve tried to incorporate the tradition before, but the curriculum was too detailed and too complicated for kids.
I’ve been there too. One year, after a particularly frustrating Advent season, I decided to write my own lessons.
The Origin Of The Advent Wreath
The Advent wreath is a time-honored tradition that started back in the time of Martin Luther.
Advent is the period of four Sundays and weeks before Christmas. Advent means ‘Coming’ in Latin, and it points to Jesus coming into the world. Jesus came, and continues, to come for us. This is life altering news – for eternity!
Christians use the four Sundays and weeks of Advent to prepare and remember the real meaning of Christmas.
It is designed to prepare our hearts for the season. In fact, if you’ve ever gone through a Christmas distracted and too busy, you know, like I do, that paying attention to the temperature of our hearts is the most important thing we can do this holiday season. Advent helps us do that well.
My Own Attempt At Advent
When I began incorporating this tradition into our home, like I said above I found that some of the Advent studies I purchased were too difficult and had too much information. I needed something that my family could actually do, was only once a week, and involved everyone. After failing to find what I wanted, I decided to create my own.
We made our own advent set up using all white candles on birch tree stands. It is the centerpiece of our table. While I love the traditional wreath, the interior designer in me loves the unique styling of the wood and white. That’s the beauty of the Advent tradition. You can make it your own in look and form.
My Curriculum: The Advent Story Booklet
This curriculum is what I created to walk my family though Advent. It is designed for families to do together through the month of December.
It’s easy to follow for multiple ages, involves everyone at the table, and offers a meaningful experience once a week. The ideal age is 5 and up.
My prayer is that this guide I created for my family would be a gift to yours as well. It is a do-able, user-friendly Advent ebook that anyone can pull out without becoming overwhelmed.
- Give various “jobs” to each member of your family for each of the lessons.
- Have one person light the candle, one person read scripture, another highlight the activity.
- Pause and discuss after each section.
- Make the Advent lighting special by providing dessert or another special item each week.
Advent makes our Christmas season rich and meaningful. It prepares our hearts for the Christ child, and makes room for God’s spirit to move and work.
May you be richly blessed as you work this season through this study!
You can purchase The Advent Story Ebook HERE ($10.00)
To listen to my podcast on the meaning of Advent, go HERE.
This will give you a great overview of what Advent means and the importance of practicing it in your home.
A sample from the book:
Or pin it for later!