Advent reminds us that we have the opportunity to reflect the love and peace of Christ. In every life there are regrets – what my father used to call the ‘woulda, coulda, shouldas’. Honestly, in every day there are regrets! But the antithesis of regret is found in the birth of our savior. The gift of peace with God, peace with ourselves, and peace with others comes through our relationship with Jesus, the Prince of Peace.
Advent inspires us to recommit ourselves to what’s important. We can examine our hearts to conquer any lingering resentments or injuries (aka grudges) and give forgiveness. We can put a higher value on the comfort and happiness of others, rather than seeking personal attention and recognition. We can be generous with our gifts to those in need, understanding that we are stewards not owners of those gifts.
Advent celebrates new beginnings to do better, live more fully, and care more deeply. In this season of shorter days and longer nights, we can be lamps reflecting the light of God’s love in our forgiveness, mercy and compassion. We can make our hearts a place where the blessings of the Prince of Peace could live.
And if on this Christmas you want to help me,
Don’t be so concerned with the gifts `neath your tree.
Open that sack called your heart, and share
Your joy, your friendship, your wealth, your care.
Excerpt from “The Best Gift”
A poem by Betty Werth