Christmas may be celebrated with gifts, food, drink, carols and time spent with loved ones, but it begins with Advent.
As my minister preached the sermon this first Sunday of Advent, he took us back and reminded us of our own Christmas’s past;
The first year you were married. The last Christmas you spent with a loved one. The first Christmas you lived away from home and drove for hours to get back to spend time with your family. The very first Christmas memory that you have from your childhood. The very first Christmas you spent with your sweetheart….
Christmas can be a season of great joy, and it can be season of unfathomable loneliness, sadness, when hope is all that you have, and it’s pretty hard to find.
Advent is the beginning of the Christian calendar, and it is a season where the beauty of light breaks the long season of darkness. As with all beginnings, there is mystery, and a tangled bundle of emotions that must all be held in our hearts just as they are, intricately and infinitely bound to the others;
This Christmas as with all others, I will remember my own Christmas’s past; both the joyful years , and the years I cried alone on Christmas eve with my kiddo tucked in his bed waiting for Santa, and the house filled only with a roaring, vast, silence.
This year has been one of great change. I have survived endings and beginnings and yet I wait with hope for one more great blessing.
As the season of Advent begins, I wish you the strength to see beyond the endings, be patient in the waiting, and the courage to live with hope for the new beginnings which are sure to follow.