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The Duty Chronicles

ADVENT CALENDAR 2013

Day 1 (Dec. 1 st ):
Today we light the very first candle--the Prophecy Candle . This candle tells us about the prophesies (foretelling of promises) in the Bible about Christ’s birth as well as the very feeling of excitement and anticipation that God's people experienced over hundreds of years as they awaited His coming. Advent is a celebration of both the arrival of Christ and His second glorious coming! Listen to this foretelling of God’s promise to us: Isai a h 7:1 4 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel. But after waiting hundreds of years, how must his people feel? Psal m 6 2:5 -6 For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him. He only is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken. Yet, we know God to be faithful: He b re ws 10: 23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful...

Questions to Consider: Do you think God’s people had a hard time waiting for

their Savior? Why? What are some things that you have a hard time waiting for? How does God want you to spend your time waiting?

Day 2 (Dec. 2 nd ):
Today we light the first candle, the Prophecy candle, as we continue to feel the excitement and anticipation that God’s people felt as they waited on Jesus for hundreds of years. They had a great HOPE because of God’s promises through His word, here is one: Mi ca h 5: 2 But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, Though you are small among the clans of Judah, Out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, Whose origins are from of old, from ancient times. Therefore Israel will be abandoned Until the time when she who is in labor bears a son, And the rest of his brothers return to join the Israelites. He will stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the Lord, In the majesty of the name of the Lord his God. And they will live security, for then his greatness will reach the ends of the earth. And he will be our peace.

Questions to Consider: We are given great hope through the prophecies not only
in the foretelling of Jesus’ birth, but also that the hope that was born lives in us today and promises to return and take us to live with Him, giving us eternal hope. What are some things you hope for as a family this Advent season?

Day 3 (Dec. 3 r d ):
Today we light the first candle--the Prophecy candle. Isaiah prophesied about Jesus’ life and ministry – that it would bear fruit as the Holy Spirit granted Him wisdom, understanding, knowledge and strength…

Isai a h 1 1:1 -2 Then a shoot will spring from the stem of Jesse, And a branch from his roots will bear fruit. The Spirit of the Lord will rest on Him, The spirit of wisdom and understanding, The spirit of counsel and strength, The spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord.
The same Spirit that helped Jesus can live inside of you and me. Through God alone we can bear fruit as well: Jo hn 1 5: 4 Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.

Questions to Consider: How is your life bearing fruit? Encourage each other in
ways you have seen growth and fruit in each others’ lives. Consider writing a note of encouragement to someone who you have seen grow and bear fruit.

Day 4 (Dec. 4 th ):
Today we light the first candle--the Prophecy candle. Advent is all about preparing for the Christ and making ourselves ready for Christmas. But more than getting all the Christmas cards sent out or all of the gifts purchased and wrapped, we want to have our hearts and minds ready to celebrate the real reason for Christmas, Christ’s birth!

Je r emi a h 23: 5 -6 "Behold, the days are coming," declares the LORD, "When I will raise up for David a righteous Branch; And He will reign as king and act wisely And do justice and righteousness in the land. In His days Judah will be saved, And Israel will dwell securely; And this is His name by which He will be called, 'The LORD our righteousness.” Ma la chi 3:1 "Behold, I am going to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to His temple; and the messenger of the covenant, in whom you delight, behold, He is coming," says the LORD of hosts.”

Questions to Consider: How can you prepare for Christmas in a way that shows
you are getting your heart ready to celebrate Jesus just as Jeremiah and Malachi were getting their people prepared to celebrate the new King? Pray together that God would focus your hearts and your minds on him during this season.

Day 5 (Dec. 5 th ):
Today we light the first candle--the Prophecy candle. We continue to look at prophecies about Jesus and His coming and ministry. This one also inc ludes a call and appointment for His people to be a light to the nations: Is aia h 42: 1, 5 -6 Behold, My Servant, whom I uphold My chosen one in whom My soul delights. I have put My Spirit upon Him; He will bring forth justice to the nations. Thus says God the LORD, Who created the heavens and stretched them out, Who spread out the earth and its offspring, Who gives breath to the people on it And spirit to those who walk in it, "I am the LORD, I have called You in righteousness, I will also hold You by the hand and watch over You, And I will appoint You as a covenant to the people, As a lig ht to the na tio ns . Is aia h 60: 1- 3 Arise, shine; for your light has come, And the glory of the LORD has risen upon you. For behold, darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness the peoples; but the LORD will arise upon you, and his g lo r y be s ee n up o n you . And nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising.

Questions to Consider: Jesus is a light to the nations. What does that mean?

What are some ways that we can be reflections of Christ and really shine this season? Write down the ideas you come up with, add them to your calendar and make it happen!

Day 6 (Dec. 6 th ):
Today we light the first candle--the Prophecy candle. Reflect on God sending forth His son and His great love for you.

Gal a tia ns 4: 4-5 But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, so tha t He mi g ht re d ee m thos e who we r e u nde r the L a w, tha t we mi g ht re cei ve the ad opti on as s ons.

Questions to Consider: What are the steps you must go through to adopt? (hint: A
LOT!) God desire for us to be his children was so strong and unrelenting that He was willing to do whatever it took to make us His own. He sent His son, Jesus Christ, to be our sacrifice, to redeem us. How does it make you feel to be adopted as sons and daughters by God himself? Spend some time in a prayer of thankfulness to God.

Day 7 (Dec. 7 t h ):
Today we light the first candle--the Prophecy candle. But before doing that, turn off all the lights in the house at night time and then try to find your lighter. Ask the kids to go get their Bible or some item that would be difficult to find in the dark and then talk to them about how darkness keeps us from getting where we need to go and ask them what emotions they feel in darkness (confused, scared, worried, painful if they trip, etc.). Light the candle and have one of them read this prophecy:

Isaiah 9:2 The peop le who walk in darkness will see a great light
Remind your kids that the darkness we face is sin (not tripping in a dark house). Without God our hearts are in the dark and separated from Him because of our sin. God promised that He would send His Son into the world to redeem us from the sin and darkness. The one He sent is Jesus! Celebrate Jesus as Light of the World!

Day 8 (Dec. 8 th ):
This week, we will be lighting the Bethlehem Candle as well as the Prophecy Candle . The Bethlehem Candle represents the preparations made for the coming Christ child. God sent John the Baptist to prepare the way for Jesus’ coming. The following scripture describes how the Lord planned to use Him to prepare the way for Jesus.

Lu ke 1: 76 -79 And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High; For you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him, To give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins, Because of the tender mercy of our God, By which the rising sun will come to us from heaven To shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, To guide our feet into the path of peace.

Questions to Consider: God used John to expose darkness in people’s hearts and
call them to come into the Light, preparing the way for Jesus. Are you ready to let Him expose the dark parts of your heart? Pray and ask God to enlighten you on what those things are and how to give them over to Him.

Day 9 (Dec. 9 th ):
Today you will light the Prophecy Candle and then the Bethlehem Candle. John the Baptist would come into the world for the purpose of preparing the way for Jesus. His goal was to get peoples’ hearts ready to hear truth.

Ma r k 1: 1-11 As it is written in Isaiah the prophet: "BEHOLD, I SEND MY MESSENGER AHEAD OF YOU, WHO WILL PREPARE YOUR WAY; THE VOICE OF ONE CRYING IN THE WILDERNESS, 'MAKE READY THE WAY OF THE LORD, MAKE HIS PATHS STRAIGHT.'"

Questions to Consider: Do you think that we are getting ready for Jesus in the same
way that the first believers did (in the Advent season as well as for His second coming)? How are we similar--and different--in what we feel and anticipate about the coming King?

Day 10 (Dec. 10 t h ):
Today you will light the Prophecy Candle and then the Bethlehem Candle. In the book of Luke we hear the story of an angel visiting Zechariah and Elizabeth (John the Baptist’s parents) while he was in the womb. The angel makes John the Baptist’s purposes clear: Lu ke 1:1 1- 17 Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing at the right side of the altar of incense. When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and was gripped with fear. But the angel said to him:

"Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to give him the name John. He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, for he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even from birth. Many of the people of Israel will he bring back to the Lord their God. And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to tu r n the he ar ts o f the fa ther s to thei r chi l dr e n a nd the di s ob e die nt to the w is d o m of the r ig hte ous --to make ready a people prepared for the Lord."

Questions to Consider: John wasn’t the light, but was born to tell others about the Light.
How are you able to be like John the Baptist and tell others about the Light? Do you always know what to say? Not likely. Who can help you to share His truth, serve others and love the way He loves?

Day 11 (De c. 11 t h ):
Today you will light the Prophecy Candle and then the Bethlehem Candle. John the Baptist was born and the hand of the Lord was with him: Lu ke 1:5 7- 66 Now the time came for Elizabeth to give birth, and she bore a son. And her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown great mercy to her, and they rejoiced with her. And on the eighth day they came to circumcise the child. And they would have called him Zechariah after his father, but his mother answered, "No; he shall be called John." And they said to her, "None of your relatives is called by this name." And they made signs to his father, inquiring what he wanted him to be called. And he asked for ( a writing tablet and wrote, "His name is John." And they all wondered. And immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue loosed, and he spoke, blessing God. And fear came on all their neighbors. And all these things were talked about through all the hill country of Judea, and all who heard them laid them up in their hearts, saying, "What then will this child be?" Fo r the ha nd of the L o r d w as wi th hi m.

Questions to Consider: The hand of the Lord was on John, as a tiny infant. God
has ways of working through infancy and childhood. In what ways have you seen God working in and through your children? Have your children recognize evidences of God’s grace in each other.

Day 12 (Dec. 12 th ):
Today you will light the Prophecy Candle and then the Bethlehem Candle. John the Baptist was prepared to proclaim good news to all who would listen: Is aia h 40: 1-5 ,9 Comfort, comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and proclaim to her that her hard service has been completed, that her sin has been paid for, that she has received from the Lord's hand double for all her sins. A voice of one calling (John the Baptist): "In the desert prepare the way for the Lord; make straight in the wilderness a highway for our God. Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low; the rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain. And the glory of the Lord will be revealed, and all mankind together will see it. For the mouth of the Lord has spoken." You who bring good tidings to Zion, go up on a high mountain. You who bring good tidings to Jerusalem, li f t up you r voi ce w i th a sho u t, l if t i t up, d o no t b e a f r ai d; s a y to the to w ns o f Ju d a h, "He re is you r Go d !"

Questions to Consider: How can we be prepared with God’s word (like John the
Baptist) so that we can bring it to those around us? Which people has God laid on your heart? Pray for boldness to lift our voices and not be afraid!

Day 13 (De c. 13 t h ):
Today you will light the Prophecy Candle and then the Bethlehem Candle. The Word brings such good news! Remember the refreshing news of the Gospel and how it nourishes our dry, needy souls as you read the scriptures: Is aia h 61 :1 -3, 10- 11 The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, Because the Lord has anointed me To bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to captives And freedom to prisoners; To proclaim the favorable year of the Lord and the day of vengeance of our God; To comfort all who mourn, To grant those who mourn in Zion, Giving them a garland instead of ashes, The oil of gladness instead of mourning, The mantle of praise instead of a spirit of fainting. So they will be called oaks of righteousness, The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified. I will rejoice greatly in the LORD, My soul will exult in my God; For He has clothed me with garments of salvation, He has wrapped me with a robe of righteousness,

Questions to Consider: Remember a time when the Lord brought comfort or

good news to your family and praise him for that. Take time to refresh each other in the Gospel, remembering that you once were dead- afflicted and brokenhearted like the scripture says- but God in His kindness sought you, bought you with Jesus’ death in your place and clothed you with His righteousness, the garments of salvation, to spend eternity in His presence.

Day 14 (Dec. 14 t h ):
Today you will light the Prophecy Candle and then the Bethlehem Candle. We are continuing to remember and talk through how to be a light FOR JESUS during this Advent season and as we await His glorious second coming. Jo hn 1:1 -9 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it. There came a man who was sent from God; his name was John. He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all men might believe. H e hi ms el f w as no t the l ig ht; he ca me o nl y as a wi tness to the l ig ht. The tr ue li g ht tha t gi ve s l ig ht to e ver y ma n w as co mi ng i nto the w o rl d.

Questions to Consider: How can you be a witness to the Light without trying to

BE the Light? How do you respond to this temptation to be looked to as great instead of pointing others to Jesus and testifying to His greatness?

Day 15 (De c. 15 t h ):
This is the week of the Shepherds' Candle for Advent. The shepherds represent the message of great joy that is brought to the world about Jesus' birth. Light the first two candles and then the Shepherds' Candle . Listen in as the angel Gabriel visits Mary to tell her about baby Jesus. Lu ke 1:2 6- 38 In the sixth month, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin's name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, "Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you." Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end." "How will this be," Mary asked the angel, "since I am a virgin?" The angel answered, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be barren is in her sixth month. For nothing is impossible with God." "I am t he L o rd 's se rv a nt ," Mary answered. " May i t b e t o m e as y ou h ave s ai d." Then the angel left her.

Questions to Consider:

Who told Mary she would have a baby? How did Mary respond? She said she was the “Lord’s servant.” Talk about what a servant is and does. What are some ways that we can act as God's servants?

Day 16 (Dec. 16 th ):
Light the first two candles and then the Shepherds' Candle. Mary’s Song is a humble song of praise to God, bringing Him glory for what He has done and what He will do.
Lu ke 1 :39 -55 At that time Mary got ready and hurried to a town in the hill country of Judea, where she entered Zechariah's home and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. In a loud voice she exclaimed: "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear! But why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished!" Mary’s Song And Mary said:
"My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has bee n mind ful o f the hu mb le state of h is ser v ant. From now on all generations will call me blessed, for the Mighty One has d one gre at th ing s fo r me—holy is his name. His mercy extends to those who fear him, from generation to generation. He has performed mighty deeds with his arm; he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts. He has brought down rulers from their throne but has lif te d u p the hu mb le. He has filled the hungry with good thing but has sent the rich away empty. He has helped his servant Israel, re me mbe ring to be me rciful to Abraham and his descendants forever, even as he said to our fathers."

Questions to Consider: What are some attributes of God you see in this song?
What song most describes you and why? What is your favorite hymn? Christmas hymn?

Day 17 (De c. 17 th ):
Light the first two candles and then the Shepherds' Candle. The angel of the Lord had already visited Mary and now he would visit Joseph to confirm God’s calling on his young couple.
Mat th ew 1: 18 -2 5 Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, "Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you shall c al l his nam e J es us , for he will s av e his p eo pl e f ro m t heir sins." All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet:
"Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel" (which means, God with us). When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him: he took his wife, but knew her not until she had given birth to a son. And he called his name Jesus.

Questions to Consider : Joseph was in the dark about Mary’s pregnancy, but God

sent an angel to tell Joseph the truth about sending His son into the world through Mary. How did Joseph respond to the angel of the Lord? Did he believe and do as he was commanded or reject the truth? Why do you think he responded the way he did?

Day 18 (Dec. 18 th ):
Light the first two candles and then the Shepherds' Candle. A decree for everyone to be counted led the young couple to Bethlehem after a long, long journey. Sheltered by the stable, surrounded by barnyard animals – yes, it seemed to be God’s perfect timing and setting for baby Jesus to be born!
Lu ke 2 :1- 7 In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. And all went to be registered, each to his own town. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of( Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.

Questions to Consider: Caesar wanted to show how great he was by counting his
people, while God humbled himself to become one of his people…what are some ways that you try to prove you are great instead of humbly pointing to Christ? Do you have a hard time imagining Christ’s humble beginnings? What do you think it was like for their family in the stable that first night?

Day 19 (Dec. 19 t h ):
Light the first two candles and then the Shepherds' Candle. After baby Jesus was born, the angels gave him a birth announcement unlike any other!
Lu ke 2 :8- 14 In the same region there were some shepherds staying out in the fields and keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the gl ory o f t h e Lo r d sh o ne ar ou nd t h e m; and they were terribly frightened. But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. "This will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger." A nd s ud d e nly t h er e ap p ea r ed wi th t he a ngel a m ultit ud e of t he h e ave nly h o st p r ai si ng G od a nd say i ng , "Glo ry t o G od i n t h e hi gh e st, A nd o n e a rt h pe ace a m o ng m e n w it h w h o m H e i s pl ea se d ."

Questions to Consider: The angels were sent to declare amazing news to poor

shepherds, keeping watch over their flocks at night. In what ways do you see God speak to you or show evidence of His grace toward you in the simple moments of the day? Keep your eyes and ears open and look for God in the small things today.

Day 20 (Dec. 20 th ):
Light the first two candles and then the Shepherds' Candle.
Lu ke 2 :15 -20 When the angels had gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds began saying to one another, "Let us go straight to Bethlehem then, and see this thing that has happened which the Lord has made known to us." So they came in a hurry and found their way to Mary and Joseph, and the baby as He lay in the manger. When they had seen this, they made known the statement which had been told them about this Child. And all who heard it wondered at the things which were told them by the shepherds. But Mary t r ea su r ed all th e se t h ings , p o nde ri ng t h em i n h er h ea rt. The shepherds went back, glorifying and praising God for all that they had heard and seen, just as had been told them.

Questions to Consider: What have you treasured in your heart? Take turns

sharing some wonderful moments you've had together! These can be any family memories, Christmas memories or special moments in your walk with God.

Day 21 (Dec. 21 st ):
Light the first two candles and then the Shepherds' Candle. Joseph and Mary welcomed more visitors the shepherds weren’t the only ones. Three kings from distant lands embarked on a long journey in order to worship the child they knew to be the Savior.
Ma tt h ew 2: 1-1 2 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, "Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him." When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him. When he had called together all the people's chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Christ was to be born. "In Bethlehem in Judea," they replied, "for this is what the prophet has written: " 'But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for out of you will come a ruler who will be the shepherd of my people Israel.'" He sent them to Bethlehem and said, "Go and make a careful search for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him." After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen in the east went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh. And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.

Questions to Consider: Like the kings were on a journey to find Jesus, what does

our journey to know and become like Jesus look like? Where are we in it and how far have we come in the past year?

Day 22 (Dec. 22 nd ):
Light all four Advent candles this week. Prophecy stated that kings would worship Him. The Star of Bethlehem led them there. And the moment they beheld Him was a moment of awe and joy. Their costly treasures paled in comparison to the Christ child, worthy of their (and our) complete worship and adoration.
Psal m 72: 10 The kings of Tarshish and of distant shores will bring tribute to him; the kings of Sheba and Seba will present him gifts. Mat th ew 2: 9- 12 the star, which they had seen in the east, went on before them until it came and stood over the place where the Child was. When they saw the star, t h ey rej oi ced e xce e di ngly w it h g r e at j oy. After coming into the house they saw the Child with Mary His mother; and they fell to the ground and worshiped Him. Then, opening their treasures, they presented to Him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. And having been warned by God in a dream not to return to Herod, the magi left for their own country by another way.

Questions to Consider: If you were one of those who had the privilege of seeing Jesus
at His birth and could bring ONE gift, what would it be and why? What do you think you could give this year that would bring glory to God? Are there things we could give that cost little or nothing? What about giving our time? Does that honor God?

Day 23 (Dec. 2 3 r d ):
Light all 4 advent candles.
Mica h 3: 16- 19 I heard and my heart pounded, my lips quivered at the sound; Decay crept into my bones, and my legs trembled. Yet I will wait patiently for the day of calamity to come on the nation invading us. Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, Though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, Though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls YET I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior. The Sovereign LORD is my strength; He makes my feet like the feet of a deer, He enables me to tread on the heights.

Questions to Consider : If you had no gifts under the tree, no ham for Christmas

Day, no new bicycle or doll, would you still rejoice in the Lord and be joyful in your Savior? How can we be content knowing that our treasure is in heaven and our joy is found in Jesus, not things?

Christmas Eve:
Light all four Advent candles. The brilliant light of the Gospel penetrates the darkness and transforms us – a little bit now and fully in Jesus’ second coming!
I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. The LORD “will be your everlasting light, and your God will be your glory” (Isa. 60:19-20; Rev.21:23; 22:5). In this new city of God, night will be no more, and days of mourning will come to an end. There will be no tears, no pain and no death. Children of the light “will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads” (Rev. 22:4).

Questions to Consider:

The Lord will delight us in His second coming by making all things new – the heavens, the earth and especially, US! Even now, the Gospel changes us and makes us new creations. What are some ways that you want God to make you new?

Christmas Day:

Today we light the past 4 candles of Advent and then the Christ candle ! Our Messiah, Jesus, Light of the World is finally here! Talk about the brightness of all 5 candles and the difference Jesus’ birth made to a dark and sinful world.
Jo h n 1:1 0-1 8 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who received him, t o th os e wh o bel iev e d i n h is na me , h e g av e t h e r ig ht t o b ec om e chil d re n o f G o d-- children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God. The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. John testifies concerning him. He cries out, saying, "This was he of whom I said, 'He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.' "From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another. For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father's side, has made him known.

Questions to Consider: What is the best gift we have received at Christmas? What is
the best gift can we give to Jesus throughout the next year?

Some Additional Resources: 30 Advent Activities {Quality Time with Kids} Toilet Paper Roll Advent Calendar Toddler Placemat Advent Calendar Good Soldiers {A Biblical Approach to Leadership Development} Baptism {Helpful Answers to Common Questions} See God’s Grace in Your Children Everyday {Virtue Chart}

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