Tomorrow we head into a new month, the final month of 2011, and my favorite time of the year! I love the joy, the music and the lights, the decorations and the baking, the opportunity to give gifts to others and show them the love of Jesus! 🙂 We have entered the season of Advent (literally “Coming”) when we prepare our hearts for the coming of the Babe, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
The reading of our Advent calendars and books and the lighting of the Advent candles were a big deal in our household when the kids were younger. We all gathered together and enjoyed taking turns opening the little windows and reading the stories. I even had to draw up a schedule (which I still have saved in my documents on the computer!) to figure out whose turn it was with which calendar or verse so that it was “fair”. I miss those days! Now Emily and I read the Advent verses and stories to each other before we begin our school day.
The first candle to be lit in Advent is “Hope”. We are to have our hearts waiting expectantly for our Lord and Savior, not only in honor of His birth, but also in the knowledge of His future return to take us home with Him. Some verses to read are listed as follows:
“For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.” ~ Romans 15:4
“looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus.” ~ Titus 2:13
“And it will be said in that day,’Behold, this is our God for whom we have waited that He might save us, this is the LORD for whom we have waited; let us rejoice and be glad in His salvation.'” ~ Isaiah 25:9
“‘For Thy salvation I wait, O LORD.'” ~ Genesis 49:18
“Our soul waits for the LORD; He is our help and our shield. For our heart rejoices in Him, because we trust in His holy name. Let Thy lovingkindness, O LORD, be upon us, according as we have hoped in Thee.” ~ Psalm 33:20-22
“‘…And you will know that I am the LORD; those who hopefully wait for Me will not be put to shame.'” ~ Isaiah 49:23c
“Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel.'” ~ Isaiah 7:14
And why is the color of Advent purple? It is the color of royalty, the color for a king, the King!
Note: I know some people have different meanings for the different candles. I am sharing what we have learned and used in our home. 🙂