Saturday, November 24, 2012

Advent is coming!

Click here for more graphics and gifs!

And what do we have planned? On this blog, we'll be providing weekly devotionals that you can print out and use with your family. The traditional time to read them would be each Sunday of the month of December, so they'll be published on Saturdays. Each week has a theme to focus on, and these devotionals are designed to be used with an Advent wreath.

In our own family, we haven't ever had a traditional Advent wreath. Don't worry, if you don't either! You can pull together some candles, with or without greenery or other decorations. My favorite "wreath" that we've ever had looked like this:

Those are plain glass jars, covered with tissue paper, candles placed inside. I'm planning to try to remake it this year. I'd love to see what you use in your family!

We light our candle(s)--the appropriate number for the week--every evening during Advent. So, we'll be using the new devotional reading each Sunday, but also drawing its theme out for a whole week, plus reading a little more Scripture each day.

No matter what you're planning, please read this: it is probably my all-time favorite Advent blog post.

Posts on this blog will slow down, in order to give the writers more time to quietly focus at home. I was even planning to stop Tuesday Topics, but now we have some good holiday themed discussion starters, so I'll schedule those to post, at least some Tuesdays. I hope you all will participate in the discussion, as you have time.

I'm excited about this season! May the Lord use the month ahead of us to prepare our hearts for His coming and to draw us closer and closer to Him.

What does Advent look like in your home? Do you observe Advent? How? What are your plans for this year? Will you read along with us in the weekly devotionals we have coming up?


  1. I am so excited that you're posting things here for Advent! I love Ann Voskamp's Joshua Tree advent book, but we shortened it a lot since my kids were too young even last year to pay attention. For this year I think something weekly as opposed to daily is more reasonable for our family as we'll be getting ready for and then leaving on a trip to the US for the holidays. But, I do very much hope to help our whole family anticipate the coming of Christ this season. With so much excitement, I don't want us to loose sight of our true reason for joy this season! I would love to hear everyone's Advent ideas! All of the things that we've done have been things that I've borrowed from someone else, so please share your ideas, everyone! You never know when you might help shape a family's traditions! =)

    Also, one of my favorite books this time of year is Noel Piper's book "Treasuring God in our Traditions." It is not only about Christmas but talks about the significance of tradition in family life. She also has some really great ideas. It used to be free online (on the Desiring God website) but I can't find it anymore, unfortunately.

  2. We have an advent calendar and this year we found a schedule to read a story from the Jesus Story Book Bible everyday up until Christmas. We're excited to start!

  3. Oh, I love Advent! It is my project this week to get organized and prepared for our Advent celebration. We do things a little differently every year, but usually have an Advent wreath and follow a schedule of readings. Since our kids are still pretty little (4 and 2), I usually prepare something for them myself since I haven't found a good plan for little kids (when they get older, I want to do the Jesse Tree, too). This year, in addition to the special Sunday readings with the Advent wreath, our nightly family devotions will be focused on the coming of Christ, and then in the mornings, I'll do a special Christmas activity with the kids each day. I'm excited about it! I will be following your plan and devotions on this blog, Phyllis. Thank you for sharing with us!

  4. I forgot to add: I also love Noel Piper's book that Ashley recommended. We also have used Family Life's "What God Wants for Christmas," too... I wrote a little about our Advent wreath on our blog:

  5. Thanks for sharing your enthusiasm about advent, Phyllis! I love it too, and also light an advent wreath every evening with our kids. It's the focal point of our Christmas! I'm writing a post about it now...

    I'm looking forward to following the devotional readings, and am going to take a look at the link you posted now.

  6. After Ashley mentioned that "Treasuring God..." was gone from the Desiring God site, I wrote to them and asked. They confirmed that it's no longer available for free, but that it can be bought through Amazon. Sad. It is also one of my favorite resources. But I'm sure it's worth the money that it costs now!

    I just found a a free Advent devotional ebook that looks quite good. They started ahead of us, but their weekly themes are the same traditional ones that we'll have here. It's mostly for moms to get into the Word daily, and it also includes recipes and activities for the whole family.