Visit our devotions website — www.rrcb.org/devotions
Advent is a time of preparation. It is easy to think of those preparations in terms of decorating the house, wrapping gifts, arranging to spend time with family, and all the other necessary planning that takes place to make the actual celebration of Christmas both enjoyable and meaningful for ourselves and our loved ones. When our actions come from a place of love, even the most mundane tasks can take on spiritual meaning. However, with the hustle and bustle of the season, it is easy for even the most enjoyable of these preparations to feel like obligations and requirements.
For several years, River Road Church, Baptist, has created a series of devotions for Advent to help us in in our December journey that leads us to a baby in a manger. Written by lay persons and ministers who are part of our faith community, and illustrated by our 3rd, 4th, & 5th graders, they are intended to help focus us each day on the true meaning of this season and help us keep our thoughts on what really matters. (They are posted daily on our website.)
This year, we wanted to connect the written devotional resource to one created specifically for children. This Advent calendar pictured is designed for children and families to help them mark the days leading up to Christmas. (Download a PDF of this free resource to print out and use!)
Beginning with November 30 and continuing through December 24, children can find the star for the day, (perhaps even color it!), read the scripture, and talk about it with their families. Each day also has a theme or suggested idea of something to do to help capture the spirit of the season. If your family uses an Advent wreath, you might use that time to reflect using this calendar resource.
The scriptures and themes of the calendar match those used for the written devotions. And while those are written by youth and adults with those ages in mind, the messages contained are certainly ones to share with children, too!
We hope these resources help you and your loved ones connect with the true Spirit of the season!
May hope, peace, joy, and love pervade your hearts and minds these Advent and Christmas seasons.
Interim Minister of Christian Education and Spiritual Formation