Today is the first Sunday of Advent – and of a new church year! Having just launched my book “The Swelling Year”, I’m a little behind in my own plans for how to mark the season here at The Consolations of Writing, but I thought I’d begin by sharing some of my favourite Advent resources for those who are on the lookout for a devotional resource for themselves or their families.
1. Names of Jesus Advent Calendar (from Sweet Honeycomb)
This gorgeous hand-made calendar is a lovely alternative to chocolate and Santa. Each day, turn over a number to see a name for Jesus and read a passage relating to it. You also get daily devotionals emailed to you with online purchase. Great for families or individuals alike.
2. Biola University Centre for Christianity, Culture and the Arts’ Advent Project
Twice a year these people do a seasonal devotional series, in Lent and Advent. They combine art, music, poetry and scripture to create a visceral devotional experience that I always appreciate.
3. Young Oceans – “Advent” album
Many bands claim to release Advent albums that are basically Christmas albums. There’s a few that capture the longing that Advent is all about. This is one of the best.
4. Walter Wangerin Jr – Preparing for Jesus
Wangerin is a gifted storyteller, especially when it comes to capturing the magical everydayness of the Bible story. These devotions open up the many stories contained in the Advent story in delightful and profound ways.
5. Rachel Mann – In the Bleak Midwinter: Through Advent and Christmas with Christina Rossetti
This one is brand new for Advent 2019. I’m just about to start it so can’t vouch for it entirely. But I know Rossetti well enough to be confident.
Know some other great resources? Drop me a comment to let me know. I’d love to hear about them.
Meanwhile, have a blessed Advent everyone. Maranatha! Come Lord Jesus.