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The month of December is my favorite month of the year because, yes, I get way too excited about the idea of Christmas that we, as consumers, have created. However, as exciting as the glitzy side of Christmas is, I love getting to participate in Advent studies to prepare my heart for the quickly approaching birth of our Savior. All too often we as Christians can forget that Advent does not end on Christmas. We can get caught up in the shopping, family get-togethers, and church services and then, once December 25th is over, go about our normal lives forgetting, until Easter comes around, to celebrate the birth, life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
I am so grateful for the month of December as a time to remind me that the true reason we get to celebrate good gifts is because our Father gave us the best gift of all. He gave us His Son to take on our punishment so that we could live a free life of intimacy with our Father.
The difference between the gifts loved ones give us at Christmastime and the gift from our Savior is that, unlike the material gifts we receive, salvation will never fade. It will always remain the same. Sure, we grow more and more used to God's grace because of it, but it will always remain a gift that can never be returned or exchanged.
The word advent is from the Latin word ‘Adventus’ which means ‘coming.' The season of advent is to prepare for the coming of a notable person, thing, or event. As we know, the true meaning of Christmas is the coming of our Savior in the form of a helpless babe. So Advent, at Christmastime, allows us to prepare for the coming of the Savior we so desperately need. This is why we celebrate Advent, throughout the month of December, leading up to the 25th.
So how can we celebrate Advent all year round?
We can celebrate because God promises that Jesus will come again. He came once, yes, but He will come again. This is something we should be preparing for everyday. There is no definite day as to when He will come again; He will come without any warning. He wants us to be prepared all of the time. We should be adoring Him, eagerly studying His Word, sharing about Him with others who do not know Him. We should be preparing our hearts all year round because the truth is that we do not know when He will come again.
Matthew 24:36 states,
“But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.”
We can celebrate in remembering that our sovereign Father knows when He will send His son to return again. When that day comes, we will spend eternity with our Father.