If you are tired of Christmas before Christmas actually gets here, then quite possibly you have never celebrated Advent. What is Advent? Advent is not decorating, shopping, wrapping, pictures, partying, stressing or the receiving of gifts. Advent is waiting, expecting, observing, praying, hoping, preparing for the arrival of Christ - first as the Child and Savior and then as the returning King.
More than any other activity, Advent can restore Jesus to the center of the Christmas celebration because on each day of Advent, the birth of Jesus is read, sung and talked about. The entire family can participate. Props are simple and inexpensive, and the memories and training will last a lifetime. Although the common tenets of observing Advent are shared by many churches, each family can add its own flavor. Following is a basic explanation on how to celebrate Advent this year.