Advent Devotional: Preparing for Christmas

Isaiah 40:3

A voice cries out: ‘In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. 

Preparing for Christmas

There’s a lot of preparation to do before Christmas arrives. Much of getting ready is about decorating, purchasing, wrapping and making things. But there is also internal work to do, if we want to feel the day and know its blessing. We need to change our minds, our hearts, our consciousness.

Preparing out hearts is not about doing more. Usually, it is about doing less, about letting go, clearing away the stuff that keeps us from receiving love and welcoming Christ in the depth of our being.

We clear a path in our hearts by letting go of things that get in the way, letting go of every idea that more stuff will fill our hearts, letting go of old hurts and angers that harden our hearts and prevent us from receiving the great love who comes to us, letting go of insane schedules that have time for everything but our own souls, letting go of our cynicism and sarcasm about people we don’t like or with whom we disagree, letting go of our confounded need to be right, letting go  and the ways we polish the self-image we project to others.

We need to let go of the idea that we have to be something other than our needy old selves. For it is to you, the real, messy, imperfect you that Christ comes.

So take time to feel the soul you are. Sit by your Christmas tree. Look at the lights. Listen to music that invites your heart. Feel your pains and joys, your lostness and hopes. Feel the longing to know the love that beats at the heart of this holy season. Pray it all.

And you will be prepared to greet the Love who is pleased to come … to you.

Rev. David L. Miller