Chaplain's thought for the week

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Chaplain's thought for the week

Revd Tom considers how we might use Advent this year

Each year when Advent arrives I’m struck by the fact that the Season is supposed to be all about longing for the coming of God into the world ( ‘O Come, O Come, Emmanuel’, we sing), while we usually turn it into a big rush to Christmas. Each December we start going mad with all of the things we ought to do: the parties, the presents, the cards, the tree, the decorations…

In all of this, we do well to ask ourselves the question: are we making any room for God in all this busy-ness? It can be all too easy to go through Christmas and forget all about Christ altogether. Perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised: it has been like this from the very start. The nativity story goes like this: God came to dwell amongst us on earth in human form… and we didn’t notice! There was literally no room at the inn.

What can we do to make room for God to enter into our lives this year, even in the smallest of ways?

One possibility is that we could slow down the rush to get our Christmas cards done. Instead, as we do them, we spend a moment feeling grateful for each person to whom we’re writing. We could ask God to bless them in their lives, or write a note saying what we appreciate about them.

Another suggestion is that as we wrap up all of those presents, we could remember that God wraps us up in love and that we have the gift of God’s presence always.

Finally, as we see the Christmas candles and lights shining in the darkness, we could become aware of the light of God shining in our lives, and the lives of those around us.

Can you make some room?