I didn’t grow up with Advent; I discovered it while living overseas, where I journaled through the season with red pen, poetry & songs, and with advent resources like books with modern literature readings. I remember sitting on balconies with blankets (India does get cold sometimes) and friends as I, for the first time, learned to savor time, slowly plod through a season, and wait expectantly for the next one: the new year.
What is Advent?
Advent is the season of celebrating the coming of Christ, and of longing for his return. It’s a season that holds the tension of hope: that we do have Christ who came to be a man and a sacrifice for us, but that we also have a Christ we must wait to return, to make all things right.
Ways I’ve Celebrated Advent
Ever since 2015, I’ve been learning and leaning into Advent (and Lent) as a season that I set a part for different study, different focus, different time spent with him. As you’ll see below, that has included writing and singing songs, poems, and short devotions. One day, I hope it might include writing my own Advent long-form devotion!
Resources for Advent Reading & Reflecting
Each year, I’ve done something a little bit different, whether it’s a different focus or book or style. I wrote songs weekly in 2016; I’ve read different books; I’ve listened to different sermons series. Here are some of my favorite Advent resources:
- Light Upon Light: A Literary Guide to Prayer for Advent, Christmas, and Ephiphany. This book was the first major Advent reading I did, and it was a really beautiful, but hefty read. This same editor also has a similar resource for Lent and Ordinary Time.
- Honest Advent by Scott Erickson. This collection from an artist I love following on Instagram is fresh and a lighter collection of readings.
- Advent Reminds Us is a series by a fellow writer/blogger/editor who has encouraged me. These posts are weighty and beautiful – a true joy to read. Best of all: they’re online & free!
There are so many more resources than this, but these are the ones I keep coming back to.
Advent posts through the years:
- Advent Songs, part 1: counselorI love advent. Just within the past year, thanks to a friend who was with me 24/7 in our first holiday season away […]
- Advent Songs, part 2: faithWith this week’s sermon, came two songs, of sorts–though the first, I guess, should be called a poem, since I didn’t discover a […]
- Advent Songs, part 3: fatherIt’s a quiet morning here. And by quiet, I mean my heart is quietly waking, coffee in hand, cardigan on, and blankets piled […]
- Advent Songs, part 4: peaceThis hasn’t exactly been a year of peace for me. Or, as the Hebrew word shalom describes it, it hasn’t been a year […]
- Advent Songs, Christmas Eve: gloryThe new year races towards me, but today, it’s only Christmas Eve. Still, as I read Luke 2 this morning, my thoughts went […]
- Advent: Peace and imperfection.“I was rounding the corner to the new year in every way. Promise had surfaced in my life. We’d had small circumstantial changes […]
- advent 2020, week 1: only the beginningAdvent is only the beginning In the gospels For the last four months, I’ve been reading & rereading the gospels each month. This […]
- poem: the advent of our shamea poem for Advent 2020, week 2 The advent of our shame was in the garden where we hid ourselves, clothed ourselves: Shame […]
- advent 2020, week 2: God understands our shameThe second week of Advent is meant to be about peace. Instead, I found myself stuck in shame. So here’s the question I […]
- advent 2020, week 3: do we deserve joy?What do you deserve? It seems like a weird question, but also one that I think most of us have a pretty negative […]
- poem: the advent of our joybased on advent week 3 post: do we deserve joy? the advent of joycomes with a baby’s womb-leapingand a once-barren woman, familiar with […]
- advent 2020, week 4: what I’ve learned about loveToday, I’ve been married for 10 months. And I love the timing of this, in the final week of Advent, the week which […]