Tuesday, December 1, 2015

THE SEASON BEFORE THE DAY


The approach of the Christmas season is a time when the yearly routine of life often changes. Even before Thanksgiving is past, we begin to see signs of the approaching holiday. It is interesting to remember that the term "holiday" has its origin in "holy day." A basic meaning of holy is that which is set apart; that which is different from the ordinary. Thus, a holy day or "holiday" is meant to be a time set apart for a specific remembrance or celebration...

Christmas, however, is more than a day; it is a season. The season before the day is called "Advent." This is a religious term that refers to having a season of preparation for a special, holy day. Therefore, the time prior to the actual day of Christmas has become the season that is filled with special meaning; not the least of which is the symbolism of Christmas...

Too often we look at things and fail to think about what they can mean to us. Life is full of symbols... The more we understand the symbolic meanings, the more we will be able to strengthen ourselves, and others, in the faith.

In 1906, Helen Keller was quoted in the December issue of Ladies' Home Journal as saying, "The only real blind person at Christmas is he who has not Christmas in his heart."

-- Rev. Kenneth A. Mortonson in the introduction to The Advent Instructor: Reflections on Christmas Symbolism


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