During December people spend a lot of time preparing for Christmas by decorating their homes and getting caught up in the busyness and commercialization of the season. The many demands we face tend to distract us from the real purpose of this beautiful holiday……the birth of Jesus.
We spend an inordinate amount of time on the physical preparation but in many cases, little time is spent in spiritual preparation for that holy day. That is the purpose of the Advent (which means coming) season. It allows us time to prepare for the birth of Jesus Christ. Given the busyness of the season, we need to make time to be silent and reflect on the wonderful miracle that is about to be retold.
Fr. Brian Mullady offers this advice: “a healthy Advent preparation of the soul involves the desire to root out faults and the desire to grow in virtue.” He compares this to cleaning the house for a Christmas party. He goes on to say: “Good Christmas preparation, therefore, demands both a realistic examination of conscience and confession of sins in the sacrament of reconciliation.”
Advent is a time of waiting in “penitential preparation” and joyful anticipation of His coming. So take a deep breath, slow down and experience the true beauty of the season as the four Advent candles of, hope, love, joy and peace are lit each week at mass.
Christ received a cold reception when he came into the world 2,000 years ago. There was no room in the inn for him. What kind of reception will he find in our hearts this Christmas? Will he find a warm, inviting place to be born? Or one filled with materialism and distraction with no room for him? Feel free to share your thoughts.
Blessings, Jeanne L