Advent ready....Go!

It looks like Christmas threw up all over my family room. Boxes of decorations are scattered all over. All have been opened and their contents are spilling out on to the floor. Yesterday we chose to get a head start decorating the house by bringing out the boxes. Ok, so four boxes were in the family room since last weekend but I never got around to opening them until yesterday. I enjoy decorating for Christmas it's just that it's, well, work. Not a bad type of work say like cleaning bathrooms rather a type of work that requires thought.

I'm not the type of gal who plans her decorating. I do not spend hours checking websites for "inspiration" to copy. Nor do I go out and buy the colors trending at the moment. For some reason this year and last the vibrant pastels reminiscent of Miami are the color spectrum. Thankfully those colors have deterred my desire to seek an outside influence on my choices for decorating. My way of planning is opening a box and pondering what to do with its contents. Do I place the vase on the side table or use it as a centerpiece for the mantel? Questions like that are posed with each box and each item within it. Normally that would be a welcome challenge. I have always enjoyed coming up with new ways to use or display our Christmas decorations. This year not so much. I'm tired. I'm mere days away from having a baby. I just don't have the same desire to prepare joyfully. This bothers me. It bothers me because every year I am trying to be so very conscience of the meaning of Advent. I want to feel that excitement of years past every year. I know, I know, the last days of pregnancy takes a tremendous toll on every woman. I should be resting. I should be focusing on the baby. All true statements.

This time of year is not about me. It's not about MY baby. It's about another baby. A mighty, beautiful, sacrificing baby. A baby born to give us hope, to give us love, to show us how to truly live happily. Jesus was born in imperfect circumstances. The Blessed Mother bore a tremendous burden of extensive uncomfortable travel for likely weeks before finally greeting her perfect Son Christmas day. That's far more than I have to complain about.

I need to remember it's not about me. It's about Jesus. It's about His love for us.

Today as I open those boxes I will remember that. I will be joyful and excited. I will be looking for the special meaning in each item we display. The hand me downs from family, the first purchases I made as a new bride, gifts from family and friends, the pieces we kept since childhood, the wonderful crafts made by my CCD students, and the carefully lovingly made decorations from my children. All are important to our celebrating. Maybe we won't put up so many of those decorations this year. Maybe just enough. Enough to remind us of the coming joy. Enough to be outward reminders for us to see each day. Enough to make us aware of a change yet notice the missing pieces. Perhaps those missing pieces will remind me to put Christ first in my day. I think that is precisely what I need most. I'll leave a little more room for Him to fill my thoughts to redirect me toward a more spiritual Advent season.


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