Happy Third Week of Advent, also known as "Gaudete Sunday". On this day, we are to Rejoice, because the Lord is Near! Our hearts should be filled with Joy as we prepare for the coming of the Lord!
"Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing. In all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus." 1 Thes.5: 16 - 24
Some may say "easier said than done...". And considering all the hustle and bustle of the season, that's understandable. Yet to have joyous, meaningful Christmas celebration, it's imperative to prepare for the way of the lord. It's imperative to set aside time for reflection and thanksgiving... for contrition, and yes, for rejoicing that the Lord is near! It is for this reason that the candle for the 3rd week of Advent is rose colored. This symbolizes joy in anticipation of the coming of Christ.
Of course this isn't always easy to do! We're all under an immense amount of pressure at this time of year. I am blessed in that I love being with my families. Yet there is still stress. For me the stress is the lack of time. It seems that we are always rushing. We hurry up to get somewhere, only to start watching the clock so that we're not late to the next place on our schedule. This is ridiculous! It's more important to be "present" and enjoy the company of the people we're with. Everything will get done... it always does. So stressing about it is a waste of time.
I have an 'app' on my Facebook page called "Message from God". Each day I receive a different message. Yesterday's message read:
"On this day of your life, Annie, we believe God wants you to know ... that a soft answer turns away wrath. When everyone around you seems to be in bad spirits, bickering and complaining, take a step back. It's so easy to answer in kind, but instead feel into your heart and answer gently. Let peace radiate from you."
What a beautiful reminder of 'how to be'. Practicing this in times of stress and clock-watching would be so awesome.. and would enable me to have a much nicer, peaceful celebration with my loved ones. After all, this is a season to Rejoice and not a season for anxiety and strife!
In closing, I'd like to share with you this wonderful video about the 3rd week of Advent:
May God bless each and every one of you. It is my prayer that all who read this have a joyous and blessed Christmas season.