Are you looking for something to read this Christmas?
Here are my Advent Readings for this year.
My six year old, Simon, is counting down the days until December 1st.
He remembers fondly that even though there is currently no evidence of the coming season in our house, we usually start Christmas on December 1st with the opening of advent calendars.
I have an activity advent calendar that I fill up with plans for December. And I have another one that sits on the table with daily readings. However, Simon is more concerned with the advent calendar that comes filled with tiny chocolates that he gets to eat before breakfast for the entire month of December.
His daily reminders that DECEMBER IS COMING are also serving to creak open the part of my heart that is hoping for Advent. If I am still for a minute, I can admit that I am also longing for a coming.
Before I can pull out the Christmas boxes, I am looking to a familiar place to answer the cries of my heart. To words.
If a word is helpful to you in preparing for Christmas, here are a few tried and true places I am going.
Preparing for Christmas by Richard Rohr
This one is new this year. It is a tiny collection of daily readings for December that I can carry in my pocket or purse. I came to love Richard Rohr when a friend gave me Falling Upward, so even though I have not yet read this selection, I feel certain it will become a treasured addition to my Christmas.
Watch for the Light
This collection had been a favorite for a few years now. Filled with 40 essays and poems by all different writers, these rich reflections are a feast for the soul.
Good News of Great Joy
This might be the easiest addition to your Advent collection. It is a free download of daily readings from Desiring God Ministries. I’ve already read through the first few days and they are beautiful. Now on my phone and Kindle, a word for today could not be more easily accessible.
WinterSong by Luci Shaw and Madeleine L’Engle and A Widening Light by Luci Shaw
These are Christmas poetry collections I found a few years ago through another blogger. I love to gather them up and sit with a cup of mulled spiced wine under the Christmas tree lights and read. (This image is almost the motivation I need to get my Christmas tree up.)
Christmastide: Prayers for Advent through Epiphany from Phyllis Tickle
I go in and out of seasons of praying these Divine Hours. When I come back to them, it is like coming home.
What the Land Already Knows by Phyllis Tickle
My friend Jerusalem introduced me years ago to these winter stories. They are now both a yearly favorite and a reminder to me that I want to write down my own family stories according to the seasons.
Going back through my Christmas books is just what I needed to start to long for Christmas.
I found this quote in the second reading from Good News of Great Joy about God’s word, the words I most need at Christmas and always:
“Is not my word like fire, says the Lord!”
Gather ‘round that fire this Advent season.
It is warm.
It is sparkling with colors of grace.
It is healing for a thousand hurts.
It is light for dark nights.