As I entered the month of December, snowflakes tumbled down outside my study window. I looked for some comfort and solace in different devotional books around my home. I was looking for one of my Advent books, which has daily readings for the season. Instead I came across "The One Year Book of Psalms", and I turned to the December 1st entry. I was greeted by this hymn and it spoke to my heart's desire for rest, freedom and joy.
Come, Thou long expected Jesus
Born to set Thy people free;
From our fears and sins release us,
Let us find our rest in Thee.
Israel's strength and consolation,
Hope of all the earth Thou art;
Dear desire of every nation,
Joy of every longing heart.
Born Thy people to deliver,
Born a child and yet a King,
Born to reign in us forever,
Now Thy gracious kingdom bring.
By Thine own eternal Spirit
Rule in all our hearts alone;
By Thine all sufficient merit,
Raise us to Thy glorious throne
The simple words warmed my heart and helped me to prepare for the day and the season ahead. So far this year I haven't been very in tune with the holidays. I'm not in a rush to put up our tree. I have hardly any gift shopping done. I have been listening to Christmas carols in the car, but that's the extent of my Christmas spirit.
Usually we have family devotions each Sunday leading up to Christmas. I asked our younger son if he would get us started this past Sunday. Since the boys are older, we allow them a turn to prepare and lead our thoughts. We ended up at a local restaurant that has free wi-fi because our internet and phone was out. It snowed on Sunday and apparently this caused our phone to die. That is why we were out, checking email, accessing my online algebra homework, so I could study for finals, etc.
The boys had spent the afternoon doing a fabulous job cleaning their rooms (finally :), so he had no time to prepare a devotion. So as we gathered around the laptop eating our bread and soup, I suggested Bradley go ahead and find some thoughts to inspire us for Advent. He told Kurt to look up the first Advent candle and its meaning. This will go down in history as one of my cherished memories of our advent devotions. We have grown up, no more wiggly bored boys who don't totally get Mom's enthusiasm for this holy season. Just four people who love each other and need the time to connect with each other and be reminded that this is a season of hope. Not just wishing for something, but deep heart joy-knowing that we are loved by an amazing Heavenly Father. Who also had a son, and knows the joys and pains of parenting, and wanting his children to grasp and cling to His enthusiasm as well as longing for everyone to embrace this holy season of remembering the birth of the Savior.
To a crust of bread, the internet and family. Have a blessed holy season watching and waiting for the advent and promised return of the Lord Jesus.