chalcedon451, a fantastic writer and pilgrim for Christ, wrote on All Along the Watchtower, his thoughts on ways each Christian can prepare for Festival of Incarnation during this Advent Season. chalcedon451 speaks of the spiritual side of preparing for Christ’s birth on his post, “Toward Advent: a reflection.” however, as I commented on the page and now wish to share on my page, I believe we, Christians, must also take a more active role in our lives to help spread the Word from our earthly vessels to the world this Advent and Christmas seasons.
I’ve discussed with a friend and my wife that there are several things we can do outwardly to open the lids of our earthly vessels to the world so that Word will spread forth. ( A topic I discuss from St. Augustine’s advent Sermo in a previous post.)
We, in our families, can stress the Festival of Incarnation through our actions. We can celebrate, with our children and other family members, the feast of St. Nicholas Day, December 6th, by having family members set out shoes or stockings. By filling shoes with chocolate gold coins or filling stockings with oranges (another St. Nicholas tradition) one can certainly use the opportunity as an invitation to open our lids to discuss St. Nicholas and the importance of God’s gospel.
Furthermore, we can transform the consumer-ness of Christmas back towards Christ by emulating the gospel in our homes. If one gives only three presents to any family member, they can be expensive or bundled into three boxes, one can teach about the Gospel of Matthew and Christ receiving three gifts. When Christians’ children get older, perhaps parents can ask to have gifts donated in the family name to the less fortunate. Parents can also request religious gifts when asked what they want for Christmas. For example, my mother always asks what to get my wife and me for Christmas, so we asked for a Nativity set. Also, on Christmas, think about working a breadline at a local parish.
These acts appear small, but if one person acts, perhaps another one will follow this example. Two more viewing these people’s awakened actions may feel inspired to do the same. In the northern hemisphere, the birth of Christ, the Festival of Incarnation, happens during the darkness period of the year. It represents is a renewal of the world. John the Baptist explains this in Jn 3:30 RSV “30 He must increase, but I must decrease.”
Each one of us can certainly do our part as Christians to assist in that renewal and out of the darkness spread light into the world.