Focusing My Heart on Advent

It’s officially my favorite time of year- the holiday season. Christmas has always been my favorite season, and there’s just something about December that makes me feel so much happier and in such a good mood. Christmas trees are everywhere, jolly music is blasting through the car speakers, and gifts are perfectly wrapped with a bow. But even though there are so many great material things that go along with Christmas, it can be hard for me to keep in mind the real reason for the season- Jesus’s birth. I say it every year- I really want to focus on the Lord this year. But it’s so hard for me to stay consistent with my advent readings and focusing on my relationship with Jesus. So far this December, I’ve been trying to really focus my heart and stay calm this advent season.

The first thing I’ve been doing is reading a daily advent reading from She Reads Truth. My friend Miriam and I are trying to do it together every day to keep each other accountable, and I love it so far. The one for today was probably my favorite one so far, I love the quote at the end. Each daily reading starts with 4-5 bible passages that relate to the message, a little devotion written by one of the women on the SRT team, and a cute graphic at the end. They only take about 5-10 minutes to read, but it’s great to get in a good mindset.

This next thing I’ve been starting to do recently, and that is reading a chapter of Luke every day. Luke has 24 chapters, so perfect for every day of December until Christmas Eve. Today I caught up and read about the birth of Jesus and his miracles. It’s cool because I’ve heard these stories a million times, but it’s so interesting to read in depth about Jesus’s life. My grandmother and I are doing this together so I love texting or calling her about it and catching up on what we read today.

Those are the two advent things I’ve been reading, but I’ve also been reading my New Morning Mercies daily devotional and a few chapters of Psalms when I have time. It is just so hard for me to unplug and switch gears from the stress of school, the call of my phone, and the busyness of every day into reading the word. Another thing that has been helping me focus is to listen to worship music while walking to class or driving around town. This is my worship playlist with all my favorite songs, if you want to follow along! I’ve been loving “Sinking Deep”, “Open Place” and “Simple Gospel” right now.

Overall, I’ve just been praying that the Lord would help me focus my heart and mind on Him this Advent season. I always feel so much better after taking time to read the word and invest in my relationship with the Lord, so it just takes discipline to actually sit down and do it. He truly is the reason for the season. Because of his birth and his sacrifice to come into this world, we have Jesus’s peace and grace every single day.

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