I wonder how many of you have bought an Advent Calendar this year? A quick internet search reveals that these heralds of the Christmas season come in all shapes, sizes and costs, filled with all manner of things - chocolate, candles, alcohol and makeup to name just a few! Traditionally, Advent is about a time of expectant waiting and preparation, a time of looking back and looking forward. For Christians it is a time to look back and remember the arrival of a child, humbly born yet destined to show humankind who God really is, and who would open the door for us to find him. It’s also about looking forward and preparing ourselves as we anticipate him coming again.
I wonder what you are expectantly waiting and preparing for? Going back to work? Re-uniting with family? Maybe a safe, effective vaccine to end this pandemic? I guess many of us are making preparations hoping that lockdown and restrictions will not stop us being together this Christmas. Our precious relationships have never been so important, since Covid prevention measures have led to isolation and separation, loneliness and insecurity, fear and anxiety for many.
The Red Cross suggests that being kind to ourselves and each other, can help us fight the negative legacy this pandemic has brought with it. (Check out their excellent resources at https://www.redcross.org.uk/get-help/get-help-with-loneliness/support-and-resources-for-adults )
So here’s a thought…as we wait and prepare for Christmas, in the middle of all the uncertainty, let’s consider how can we help one another to feel included, connected and reassured. Let’s give the gift of kindness. What one thing can you do today to be kind to yourself? Who around you, needs a little show of kindness? What will you do? Have a healthy, blessed and kind Christmas!