My mind is fluttered with slivers of christmas, a few presents still to buy, pieces of wrapping paper all over the house, beautiful lights around the neighborhood, the intoxicating scent of our christmas tree, our simple paper nativity set, the empty waiting stockings, and our beloved advent candles flickering each night at dinner. Everywhere there is a little, often sweet and wonderful, piece of Christmas knocking at my door. But I, so badly, desire to honor the season of Advent and squeeze every ounce of goodness from the short season.
Sometimes, I associate Advent with digging your heels in and refusing to allow any hint of Christmas in. Although there is some truth and value behind the purposeful seperation, Advent means nothing without the expectation of Christmas.
We are to prepare and order our homes and hearts to receive the King. God is so big, and I am so small, so Advent is a time to grow my capacity to receive and adore the creator of the universe. A time of longing, waiting, excitement, and preparation to receive all that is good.
We can not escape the coming date on our calendar or the constant signs that it will be here soon, so how do we turn these signs into Advent? Into preparation and waiting?
This year I have loved the inclusion of purposeful advent music into our daily routine. I created a playlist in November and listen to it at work, at home, in the car, basically everywhere. It has placed a constant chorus of invitation and preparation in my heart as I swirl between inflatable Santas and snowmen this December. I can’t run away from the signs of Christmas, and I don’t want to. I choose to see them as triggers. Opportunities and reminders that I want Jesus, I want to make more room for him in my heart, I want to receive him fully on Christmas and accept his kingship in this passing world and the next.
So today, I share with you my advent playlist. It is filled with songs from all genres that speak to our mortality, Jesus’s coming, and the stillness of winter. The playlist starts with a few songs that help me quiet my Martha heart, but builds in expectation and may even get your toddler dancing. I hope it helps you prepare and focus your heart, admits the christmas parade surrounding you.
We will wait, for the uncontainable joy of Christmas, we will wait in wonder for the light of the world. Prepare us Lord Jesus, for the nativity of God incarnate.
“When you search for me, you will find me; if you seek me with all your heart.” -Jeremiah 29:13
Jesus we are making room for you, searching for you, and preping our hearts for a celebration worthy of the Christ child.