Your check list is a mile long, but a nagging thought sticks beneath the presents and the dinner preparations, “I wish we could focus more on Jesus as a family.”
It’s not too late.
Each year of parenting we seem to sort out a little further how we want to “do” Christmas with our family. Saving some old traditions, starting new ones, but most of all focusing on Christ through His word and serving others. Last year our family enjoyed an evening devotional time together during Advent.
Some things don’t seem to change. My husband and I marvel at people who bought all of their presents eight months ago, have most of their Christmas dinner cooked and frozen ahead of time, and gets all of the kids to the right rehearsals on time. But we scramble at the last minute for presents, wrap things at 2am on Christmas morning, and this year we’re beginning to think soup sounds like a fine Christmas dinner if it means we aren’t in the kitchen very long.
But what we didn’t procrastinate on was our family time in the evening. All of last year’s presents are forgotten, stuffed in the back of closets or under a bed, but we all remember how much we enjoyed the six of us sitting down together to do our Advent Bible Study. This year we started with Nancy Guthrie’s devotional book and it served us fine but it started to feel like it was just getting the job done, not leading our hearts to be challenged, encouraged, or filled with praise.
Last week Quiet Times for kids put their new Twelve Days of Christmas study on sale and I bought it, read through it, and a few nights ago we tried it.
Before this study, I only associated the twelve days of christmas with the song I sang every year in school and I knew nothing about the historic and church related celebration by the same name. This study will not teach you anything about turtle doves or leaping lords. But in the five nights that we’ve done the study we’ve learned about the incarnation of Christ, the crown at the end of a long road of obedience, and the promise of never being seperating from our Lord. The poems are one of my favorite parts of the study, including John Piper and George MacDonald.
Each of the twelve days includes a quote, a Bible verse, a short devotion, a suggested celebration from the feasts of the historical twelve days of Christmas, and a heart-provoking poem.
Also included is an individual Bible study for the kids that correlates to the family devotion.
The study can be used at any time during the Christmas month or you can start it on the 25th, the traditional beginning of the Twelve days of Christmas, which means it’s not too late for you to begin your family devotion. In fact, you can enjoy it more peacefully since the busy commercial season is almost at a close.
A note on recommended ages: Our kids are 11, 9, 6, and almost 3. If my oldest was 7, I’d consider this study too advanced for our family. But the 11 and 9 year old have been able to follow along fine, and the six year old tags along as usual, hearing important Biblical truths and he helps read the scriptures.
If you use the code below, you can purchase the study half-price, which is $7.00.
You can read a review of some of their other studies here.
Praying for peace and hope that comes only through the knowledge of Jesus Christ, our savior and Lord.