It's Christmastime. How does your to-do list look?

"Sales to Shop and Presents to Wrap"

There are sales to shop and presents to wrap. There are cards to send and decorations to unpack. There are parties to attend, events to plan, and trips to make.

There are long lines, traffic, stress, delays, and expectations.

That's the time of year it is. It's Christmastime.

"We Remember and Celebrate His Coming"

But in the midst of all this, we're supposed to remember that it's the time of Christ, the time we remember and celebrate His coming.

What if there were a way to put aside all the trappings of Christmas so we could look forward to the joy of Christmas?

Well, there is.

Advent: "The Reason for the Season"

For hundreds and hundreds of years, believers all over the world have observed Advent. For four Sundays before Christmas Day, Christians have paused to reflect on the longing Israel had for their coming Messiah, and the joy we as Christians have knowing He is with us.

The colors of Advent may seem strange to those of us used to the red and green of Christmas. Purple represents Christ's majesty. Pink, the hope of His appearance. And white, the promise that one day He will come again.

Christians have even sung Advent hymns many of us know as Christmas carols: hymns such as "Come, Thou Long Expected Jesus," and "O Come, O Come, Immanuel."

It's Time to Prepare Your Heart for Christmas

Every Christmas, Christians try to remember the "reason for the season." We struggle to hold onto the joy and peace we know is there, but that we often can't find amidst the clamor and urgency of the "holidays."

Through Scripture readings, songs and prayers, Advent can become a personal or family tradition each year.

Consider the value of an ancient spiritual tradition, one that can focus your mind on Christ and prepare your heart for Christmas.