I have had a couple of days to think and gather my ideas, this being after my full November of over 30 posts. I am not sure I could keep that up on a monthly basis as it took a lot of hard work, but it was fun.
I started attending my local church about 2 years ago. I think its ok to say it was with no huge religious feelings that I attended. I felt at peace in the church, I enjoyed the service and the people so I stayed on.
This time of year is very important in the Church year, and starts on the 1st of December and goes through until the 24th of December. Each Sunday a candle is lit and in our church it is normal a child from the Sunday school.
So advent is a Christian festival leading up to Christmas. The name advent means coming or arrival
Advent starts on the first Sunday after Saint Andrew's day (November 30th) and continues through the next four Sundays that will lead up to Christmas day. Traditionally we are encouraged to think on four things as Christmas comes along.
Each Sunday in advent has a theme to be pondered on during the season. In many churches candles (either red or purple) are lit on these four Sundays, and a fifth (white) candle is lit on Christmas day.
There are lots of Church reasons behind Advent but for me it is also one of contemplation and reflection. It is all to easy these days to really get mixed up in the commercial Christmas, and forget the true meaning. Now this true meaning of Christmas can be different for us all.
I choose to use the lighting of the advent candles to look at my life. To remember what is important to me and what I can do to improve things. I would love that Christmas shown on the movies, all snow and warm fires and loved ones all around having fun.
For many that is just not going to happen! I think it would do us all good to stop for just a second and think of the real meaning of Christmas, and look at what we have in our lives to be so grateful for.
I am hoping that this year coming up to Christmas, all my loved ones will be happy and safe. I think that is a gift I would give everyone if I could, along with good health.
So even if church is not a place for you, its still a way to have a good think and for you to spend time loving those special people in your lives.
So candle one was lit last Sunday and I hope that for everyone as it burns it will be happiness to you all.