Why are you so crazy about Advent, Anna?

Today is November 15. And you know what’s on my mind?

WHY THE HECK IS EVERYONE ALREADY PUTTING UP THEIR CHRISTMAS TREES?? Okay, so they’re putting up their Christmas trees. That part I really don’t care about. What I do mind is each person sharing their excitement of the Christmas season on Facebook/Twitter/Instagram.

It’s so easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of Christmas (wow what a cliche statement, Anna). But it’s true. I work in retail and our Christmas aisles exploded even before Halloween had passed. We live in a society that puts Christmas music on before even Thanksgiving week (I’m looking at you, 99.5 WMAG) and encourages those Christmas present deals before Thanksgiving so that you can relax between Thanksgiving and Christmas.

But do we relax? Heck no! There’s skinny jeans to mourn over (because none of us are fitting into those any time soon), there are presents to wrap (since we decided to buy them all before the holidays started), and oh crap! We forgot to get mom the perfect present so we actually aren’t done shopping at all.

I’ve grown up in a Christian household and we very much participate in the Christmas tree-putting up, the cookies and milk for Santa, and the exchanging of fun Christmas presents. However, as I’ve matured and grown in my faith with Christ, I notice that on both Thanksgiving and Christmas days, I have missed the whole reason for the celebrations.

Consistently, on Thanksgiving, I’m too concerned about what is going to be for lunch, where my brother and I are traveling, and (quite frankly) what I’m going to be wearing for family pictures. By the end of the day, I’m scrolling on Instagram noticing how thankful everyone is for whatever is in the picture that is posted, but I haven’t actually told anyone I came into contact with just how grateful I am for them.

Likewise, on Christmas, I get to my Christmas Eve service at my church (if I get the pleasure of attending one outside of my oh so busy Christmas schedule) and burst into tears, weeping at who Jesus is and why God has sent His Son. It really is a beautiful story that God turn Mary and Joseph – ordinary people – into extraordinary parents that play a vital role in Christianity. I weep. (I also pray that I never become so insensitive that I never stop weeping when I hear the story.)

But I missed the whole preparation of my heart. I missed the fact that we get to celebrate this holiday because at one time, our Savior was born. Therefore, I’ve made it my personal goal to study during the season of Advent in preparation for Christmas (and Lent in 15032317_10211140825223447_7247223496859585662_npreparation for Easter). I stumbled upon Sacred Holidays about a year ago and I have fallen in love with the idea of sitting still and taking the chaos out of our holiday-filled days (for at least 10 minutes).

This year, I’ve been blessed to work with the Advent launch team of Sacred Holidays. A group of women nation-wide have been praying for each other and for those that desire quiet and calm in the midst of Christmas. We pray for the Lord’s presence in each of our lives as we work towards finding a balance between the hustle and bustle and remembering why this holiday is so important of our faith.

The theme this year, “He Is: The Attributes of God,” comes in four different books: family, teen girls, women, and men. Becky and her fellow contributors have worked diligently with caring spirits to design this year’s studies so that we can dive into who God is and just how He can work in each of our lives.

Fortunately for you: you’re a friend of mine! (Ha, more lucky for me than you.) But, for this season, that means that if you’re at all interested in joining the Sacred Holidays community, you get a 10% discount!!! Type FRIENDSGET10 at check out when you purchase your Sacred Holidays studies. This code expires at 10pm CST on Nov 17 (this Thursday), so be sure to snatch it up soon! I know that you will be as blessed as I have. Take time for you and the Lord this Christmas. Y’all deserve it!

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For more information, feel free to visit the Sacred Holidays websiteSacred Holidays Instagram, and search for #sacredholidays #advent on any social media you’d like!

xo, anna.jpg

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