Dwelling in Advent

I am linking up for the Five Minute Friday. The FMF is hosted by Kate Motaung on her blog Heading Home. Today’s prompt is “Dwell.” Write for five minutes; unedited.

One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.” Psalm 27:4

Dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life. These words make me think of my friend Laura, and Andrew and all of those who have lived their lives sharing God’s love with the world. I am so thankful that my friend Laura has dwelt here in this place all of her days and will continue to dwell there until she takes her last breath and God asks us to lay Laura’s mat at his feet.

But as I am reminded of those who dwell in the house of the Lord, I also think of those places that I do not want to dwell either. I do not want to dwell on the news that only seems to be bad news. I would much rather dwell in those joy-filled happy spaces. I do not want to dwell on the evil in the world. There is so much I do not want to dwell on.

Yet as Thanksgiving draws near and Advent is soon upon us, I find myself in a place that I want to dwell. Advent is my most favorite time of the year! I love waiting and watching for this precious Christ child to come. I love sitting and dwelling in this space…this deep breathe of fresh air that reminds me of what comes in this infant; this unlikely son born to an unlikely women in a dirty stable in Bethlehem. This one who comes simply as the light in the midst of the darkness. This one who is Emmanuel–“God with us!”

During the days of Advent, I find that this is a place that I want to dwell as I reflect on the true reason for this season. With all the lights off, Christmas lights twinkling all around me, cup of hot cocoa in my hand, my favorite music playing in the background, I simply dwell in the peace of this season. 
Go Fish-More Than A Story 
(One of my fave Christmas songs. And hopefully you’ll forgive me
 for posting a Christmas tune before Thanksgiving!)

44 thoughts on “Dwelling in Advent

  1. Lights! I love Christmas lights and how they represent the Light of the World in the season of darkness. I love getting up extra early and turning the Christmas lights on and dwelling in their beauty and message of hope. May god draw near to you, Tara, as you dwell in him and help your friend Laura.

  2. Tara, it's so easy to let our thoughts dwell where they shouldn't. But, when we dwell on the Lord, that's when we can know His peace. It doesn't mean we stop feeling the pain of those around us, just that we can feel it with the filter of His peace around us. And I'm with you, dwelling on the celebration of Jesus' coming is a great place to dwell. 🙂

    • Jeanne, it really is so easy to let our thoughts dwell where they shouldn't. Yes, feeling the pain but also feeling it with Christ's filter of peace around us. I like that image a lot.

  3. The lights are my favorite part of Christmas. The darker our world seems to get, the more I enjoy the celebration of Christ. Beautiful post, Tara! 🙂
    Let's dwell in the joy together!

  4. Hi Tara

    I don't want to dwell on the news either! I am thankful that I live in a place where I have the choice of turning the bad stories off – SO thankful!

    We've been so busy getting our new house ready for moving in, I haven't had much of a chance to 'dwell' anywhere – a cup of hot chocolate and some Christmas music would be a welcome change. Oh! They WILL be a welcome change – Christmas is coming! What a wonderful reminder!

    I hope your weekend is full of twinkling lights and music – and hot chocolate!

    • Janet, I think there are so many of us who do not want to dwell on the news either. So fun that you are moving into a new house. My weekend actually did involve some hot chocolate but no twinkling lights or music yet. I will get them up SOON!

  5. Love this, Tara. It is so easy to dwell on the bad news and evil in the world, but so encouraging to focus instead on the fact that Jesus came to dwell with us and shine light into the darkness.

  6. I love the song never heard it before. Thanks for sharing!! Advent is my favorite time of the year too. This year I bought an advent kit from a lady at my church and can't wait until Dec 1st hits so we can start it!! As always, praying for Laura and all of her family and friends.

    • I am so glad that you loved the song. It is one of my absolute faves! You are going to have so much fun with your Advent kit. And thanks for the prayers for Laura, her family and friends. It is so greatly appreciated!

  7. You, my other daughter, are choosing the right thing. You just dwell right there, at HIS FEET, in the quiet with the twinkle lights, and your cuppa of hot cocoa – and HE will be pleased. Well done, Tara, well done.

  8. This is so beautiful! The image of sitting and dwelling and drawing in close to God is comforting and filled with peace. Praying we all find this calm and quiet during Advent this year.

  9. I love the Thanksgiving, Advent and Christmas season as well…I don't always "decorate" for it anymore…it is way toooo much work for just me and my hubby; nobody comes to our apartment anyway, and I have Christmas in my heart. I do try to put out a couple of my Nativities; and that's all I need to be reminded of the time of year…and then, ignore the things we do not want to dwell on…yet, sometimes, the "not so lovely" comes to us anyway.

    Thanks for sharing! I am still working on getting mine together…

    • I collect Nativities so that is one of my fave things to put out. I can totally understand not decorating in your small space and it being too much work. You indeed do have Christmas in your heart and really that is the most important.

  10. Dwell is an interesting word, thanks for writing on this. We all have a choice, no matter our circumstances, on what to dwell, so I will dwell on all the many people, places and things to be thankful for each day. Above all, to dwell in His presence!

  11. Advent and Christmas are my favorites, too! I didn't grow up celebrating Advent; it was only when the hubby and I joined the Church of the Nazarene a few years ago that we began observing the season, but even then it's only been the last couple of years that we've had the candles and done the readings in our home each evening. I love the sense of peace mingled with anticipation.

    • Mine too! I love that you light the candles and do the readings in your home each evening. I too love the sense of peace mingled with anticipation. Last night I was reading in Mandy Hale's book "Beautiful Uncertainty" (It's a pre-release that Susan picked up for me at Allume!) and she talks about Advent and being single and waiting. It was my fave chapter so far!

  12. Just reading your last paragraph gave me such a feeling of peace and calm. I think Advent is one of my most favorite times of the year, too. So much we don't want to dwell on, but keeping our eyes on God will bring peace and comfort.

  13. Beautiful post, Tara. Especially love:
    "This one who comes simply as the light in the midst of the darkness. This one who is Emmanuel–"God with us!"
    Oh how we all desperately need His Light, in the darkness of this world and in the weight of grief, pain and heartache within and around us.

  14. Thank you for your words to remind us what the Advent season is for! I tend to get tired when the decorations go up before Thanksgiving and the commercialism of the season surrounds us. Thanks for the reminder to shift perspectives friend!

  15. Tara, it is sooo hard to be looking at the news and our news feeds. I have been trying to ignore most of it while staying relatively informed, definitely difficult, BUT I can't let it bring me down because THAT gives Satan a hold on me that I just don't want to give him. I know you feel the same. I am excited for Advent too. Oddly, Christmas itself is my least favorite thing to celebrate but I LOVE Advent, lighting the candles, reading the scripture and the leading up to the day that we receive the GIFT!! I have a lot of reasons for disliking Christmas itself, the main one being how it has become so secular and is so heavily focused on spending money. When the kids are grown I am excited to spend Christmas as it should be, celebrating in the birth of our Saviour without the debt and bills and commercial indulgences. Praying you are doing well!!!

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