I have been trying to get here all day to share with you a few pictures of our Advent thus far. The encouragement to keep a simple, liturgical Advent first came to me through this classic Like Mother, Like Daughter post so I think it is very fitting to join in on the Advent link-up today.
I have gone back to that post often. I really took Leila’s words to heart and have found that she is right.
Simply by lighting a candle, we really can begin to inspire wonder in our family…
We did not grow up with Advent traditions so we have started slowly. For eight years now, this is the main tradition we have cultivated. We light the candles before dinner as we sing one verse of O Come, O Come Emmanuel.
That is it.
There is something very wonderful about this simple act.
(Funny side note- My son said he was holding that ruler to measure his personal space.)
It isn’t always perfect. Sometimes the baby is crying. Sometimes I am antsy to hurry up and sing so we can eat because I am getting cranky. But it is always a good to see the children’s eyes light up with the candles and to make an act of trust that “Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.”
This year, we found ourselves ready to add the Jesse Tree to our family traditions. The kids are keeping strict tabs on whose turn it is to hang an ornament on the tree each day. The devotional reading that goes along with the ornaments is brief enough for my three year old.
I have Advent music playing around the house as much as I can. I have a stack of picture books waiting for me to pick up at the library tomorrow. I’m trying to remember to pray the St. Andrew Novena prayer daily, if not fifteen times a day. These things are so lovely, and I’m enjoying their addition to our Advent.
But, if all else fails, in the evening, I light a candle for hope.
“We wait in hope for the Lord; he is our help and our shield.” – Psalm 33:20