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Advent:  the arrival of a notable person, thing or event.

Whether we call it advent or not, we prepare for the Christmas season one way or the other.

I began with the pulling out of boxes stored away for eleven months of the year.  Do these things multiply in the dark closet?  There are so many even after culling through and trying to part with some of it at the end of each December.

I went outside with greenery and red ribbons for light fixture and mailbox.  Then I remembered Mary and Joseph behind the house.  They came from an auction Sweet William and I attended this fall.  About a dozen pieces of concrete statuary came at a bargain with the holy family being part of the group.

I began the process of pulling, rolling, dragging the pieces to the front yard.  It took a long time to get them to the place I wanted them, huffing, puffing, and shedding my coat in the process.

The baby Jesus and two small concrete lambs were easier to handle.

I stood back to admire the vignette, please with myself after all that work.  Then I recalled the first Christmas.

Mary and Joseph had anything but an easy time getting their Christmas baby.  They were misunderstood and disgraced.  They traveled long and large with child.  Their companions at the birth were animals instead of family and friends.

For this first century couple, their advent was hard.

I’m kidding myself if I think my preparation for Christmas is difficult.  I bring on my own stress with too much shopping, too many events to attend, too much gift wrapping, baking, or anything else I add to my holiday list.  It is nothing compared to the advent of the Son of God breaking into our sinful world from His glorious one.

I will rejoice that He came.  I will celebrate the events of His birth this month.  I will look toward His second coming with great anticipation.

Let every heart prepare Him room.

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