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Advent Traditions: Calendar

December 3, 2009

As early as the middle of the 19th century, families began the tradition of counting down the days until Christmas.  While advent calendars would not be formally printed for another 50 years or so (1903-1904), families would cross off days with chalk, light small candles at night, or display different pictures leading up to their celebration of Jesus’ birth.

A few days ago, many children began their yearly tradition of opening each days’ door on the calendar to receive a piece of chocolate, view a picture, or read a Bible verse.  In any case, the tradition of counting down the days until we celebrate the incarnation of the Christ is significant.

God’s people looked for and longed for the Messiah for thousands of years.  They combed the Scriptures, wrote songs, and derived faith from the promise of the One who was to come.  Many who waited for so long refused to accept Him when He came.  But others recognized Him immediately.  Upon meeting Jesus, Andrew runs to tell his brother, Peter, “‘We have found the Messiah’ (which means Christ)” (John 1:41).   As we anticipate His coming and long for the day when He will return to reconcile all things to Himself, let us not miss the joy of this season.  May we rejoice at His birth and glory in His life and work.

Do something special for yourself and your family to anticipate and celebrate the advent of the Messiah, Jesus Christ.

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