November always seems like the busiest month. It’s like subconsciously everyone wants to get everything done before the end of the year. We all know that Christmas is right around the corner and apparently that means more rushing and pretending to be busy-ness.
The festive season can be a lot of fun but if you’re wondering how you can make this winter season less of a mad one and more of a special one, have a go at focusing in on making Christmas more meaningful.
No one really knows when Jesus’s actual birthday was, but celebrating his birth is still (obviously) worth it. On the Christian calendar, Advent marks a sweet opportunity for a spiritual practice where we can pause and focus on the amazing concept of hope, peace, joy and love.
However, after all of the shopping and decorating and wearing silly jumpers we often forget to slow down and focus on the beauty of Advent.
So instead of crashing in to Christmas this year, here are some ideas to help you have a more meaningful and intentional December:
- Christmas Countdown
Instead of counting down to the big day with chocolate why not countdown by collecting useful items to give away. In the lead up to the big day, put aside a thoughtful gift. By the time Christmas comes around you’ll have a box full of love that you can pass on to someone else. You can donate your advent box to a local Foodbank or a charity shoebox appeal like this one or this one.
- Hold an alternative Christmas carol service
Carols are a great tradition and a great way to share the Christmas spirit with your local community. But instead of just singing the hymns, why not spice things up by creatively exploring the themes of hope, joy & peace. Here’s an event that’s planning on using storytelling and poetry to reflect on Jesus’s birthday.
- Gratefulness Notes
Sharing gifts can be such a lovely way to say I love you to friends and family, but it can often be such a tricky and expensive process. Remembering this is a season to meditate on hope, joy, peace & love why not take some time to write your nearest and dearest a notes not of gratefulness, celebrating and encouraging them into 2017.
If you already have Christmas plans in the diary then be very thankful. Many people spend Christmas alone and without any celebration of love and life. Instead of watching Christmas movies throughout all of your holidays, why not give up a few hours to bring some joy to someone else. Here and here are some great opportunities to volunteer
For some more thoughts and ideas have a read of this popular blog.