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A Mindful Preparation For Christmas

Advent is upon us. Is it just me, or has time compressed for everyone? It seems there should be a solid week between Thanksgiving and the first Sunday in Advent, but there isn’t. We’re in it now. So let’s take a deep breath and focus on how we can make this wonderful season meaningful.

Advent is a time of preparation. We live in an instant gratification, fast food world, so the state of ‘preparation’ isn’t the norm for us. I love Thanksgiving because it is one of the few meals of the year when I truly focus on preparation. For hours I cut up a ton of vegetables and fruits by hand, pouring energy and love into what hopefully becomes a spectacular spread. But on most other days, I am just trying to get dinner on the table - that is, when we aren’t ordering some kind of take-out! On those days my focus is on expediency and not on preparation. Which meal is more satisfying?

When we are mindful, our entire life is more satisfying. Advent reminds us to mindfully prepare ourselves for the birth of the Christ – both the historical Jesus and the Christ within. Each week we light a candle and focus our intention on Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love. We do this in the Sunday service, and some of us also take this ritual into our homes. In the book A Mindful Christmas, author Barbara Kilikevech writes, “Advent is a wonderful time to reflect on what Christmas means to you and to turn your thoughts inward and discover your own inner light and strength.” She goes on to remind us, “The symbols—the wreath, the Nativity scene, the Christmas tree —only help us to express the meaning that is already inside of us.”

So breathe. Relax. Open yourself to the wonder of the season. Listen within to the still small voice as you consciously carry out your Christmas rituals. There is no need to get caught up in anything that looks like stress. Don’t buy into it this year! There is not too much to do, only that which needs to be done. There are not tons of gifts to buy, only the gift of love to perfectly share with your fellow life travelers.

To support your mindful Advent season, we have prepared a special service on Sunday, December 5 (2010) dedicated to your own personal journey to Bethlehem. You hold within yourself the archetypal energy of every character in the nativity story. Come and experience it. We will give life to the story again during our first Christmas Eve service.

With conscious intention, we can make this season an authentic expression of joy, love, peace and true meaning.

“And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.’” Luke 2:17

Silent Unity

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