Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Thoughts on Advent (a pledge) Part 1

Mr. and I had great plans of decorating for Christmas tonight.  But after getting home, whipping up dinner and wassail (which, by the way, how do YOU pronounce because Mr. and I disagree...), putting up the Autumn decorations, and pulling out all our Christmas stuff, I was absolutely pooped.

So instead Mr. pulled the tree out of the closet (we are blessed enough to have enough storage to be able to keep the tree intact and shove it into an empty closet) and we curled up on the couch to watch Home Alone.  Ya know... with all the decorations strewn about the house.

We'll get to decorating eventually, but while I was pulling out all the decor I got to thinking.

I've been doing a lot of thinking lately.  Well, really I do a lot of thinking ALL the time. I mean usually I can't STOP thinking.

But I've been thinking long and hard about Christmas.

At Altamesa we have been having a lot of discussions about Advent and what it means and how we can use Christmas as a springboard to inviting Christ into every aspect of our lives as we greatly expect our Savior's return.

And if you know me at all, I love Christmas.  It used to be my jam.  Fo reals.

I used to go all out and decorate like crazy.  I spent a lot of time listening to Christmas music (and I mean I would start in like September) and I would recreate and attempt to create memories.  And Christ was in my Christmas, but He wasn't my focus, if that makes any sense.

Well after several discussions about Advent and the practice of it and what it means to celebrate Advent, I got to thinking about my choices during Christmas.

Now, I enjoy a lot about Christmas, but probably my most favorite part about Christmas is the music.

I absolutely adore Christmas music and you only get to listen to it once a year!

And I listen to a lot of Christmas music.  All kinds too.  Secular and Christian.

But this year, I am trying to intentionally refocus my heart and mind on the death and resurrection of Christ and the hope we have in His second coming.  And so my pledge for the season of Advent (which technically starts on December the 2nd) is that I will only listen to music that will help me to reflect on Christ.

Now, obviously if I'm in the middle of a store and "Jingle Bells" starts playing, I'm not going to run out of the store.  I will also not shout "bah humbug" while watching television and "Santa Baby" comes on.  Though I might if I hear Mariah Carey singing "All I Want for Christmas."

Honestly, my heart just needs this.  My soul needs it.  I can get so caught up in the season that I forget why it's important that we celebrate.  And I do believe that it's important.

So my plan is to create a playlist that weeds out all of my secular Christmas music.  I'll be back tomorrow or Thursday with a list of some of my favorite songs and artists just in case you'd be interested in joining me.  And there are lots to choose from!

I did a little test today and as I skipped certain songs and focused on ones with a Christ-focus, I found that I heard them differently for the first time.  I connected with them more.  I felt God opening my heart as I reflected on what it meant that He sent His Son for us.  And he's coming again!

Ya'll, it was GOOD.

So if you plan on joining me, I would love to know!  I pray that it will bless you and that our true focus is on Him at this time and at ALL times.

Come quickly, Lord Jesus.

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