Does not matter how many Advent seasons one embarks on, the journey to Bethlehem is new every time.

Why?

imageBecause the past year with its joys and sorrows, its victories and defeats, its gains and losses has changed us. You and I are older, whether 7 or 70 we are not the same persons we were one year ago.

How we approach the journey. What we expect. What we desire. All the factors that push us forward to find again
that the baby in the manger culminate during this journey.

So, we struggle through the crowds, the holly jolly decorations, and seek Jesus.

We may even put on false faces of cheer to mask the pain every display, greeting, and song brings, because the past year has brought us to our knees more often than not.

We know as Christians that we are supposed to be light for others who stumble, not even aware they are looking for the babe in the manger, but we ourselves are often stumbling as well.

Find a rest stop today, a place in time to be still. Is the light within you dulled by the burdens you are carrying? Seek to hear the call of the One Who loves you best.

Remind yourself of the reason for the journey, submit the whole of your load to God and receive the strength needed to continue forward. You are needed so others will know the goodness of God.

Turn loose of the grip you have on the past which you cannot change, so you can move forward with confidence and grace.

Contemplate these two verses of scripture as the YOU of today are, not the person you were last year, as a child, or before the Holy Spirit took up residence within you.

Consider the losses, the gains, the fires you have walked through since you last made the Advent journey.

Bathe in the warmth of His Glorious Light, face up turned and expectant.

Rest, Remember, and Rejoice!

“But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.”
‭‭1 Peter‬ ‭2:9‬ ‭NLT‬‬

“For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.”
‭‭Philippians‬ ‭2:13‬ ‭NLT‬‬

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