I am looking forward to reading through Unwrapping The Names of Jesus, a new devotional written by Asheritah Ciuciu for Advent this year, which is coming up soon!! Looking through this book and reading the introduction along with a couple week's of the devotional, this will be a book that will invite you to prepare for the true meaning of Christmas! Provide you with a time to slow down and devote yourself to spending time with Jesus. Christmas is a busy time and I love the season, but I need these reminders and am thankful for resources like this, to help me focus on the true meaning and not miss out on precious time with my Lord!
If you have never done the practice of Advent, the author provides you with information on how and why she feels it is an important practice to partake in. "During the Reformation, some Protestants deemphasized the Christian liturgical calendar in a desire to make a clean break from the Catholic Church. But in so doing, we have lost some of the richness that comes from bridging worship in the twenty-first century to that of the early church. As Philip Meade points out, "Although we are wise to not make our residence in the past, we nevertheless should appreciate and recognize the importance of what the church has been doing for hundreds of years." Insofar as this practice can help us meditate on Scripture and more fully enter the season of Christmas, it is a worthwhile addition to our Christmas traditions, and many evangelic churches are recognizing this as they add Advent practices to their Christmas church programs." To which I so agree, and why I have been practicing Advent with my family the last couple of years. She also quotes Jen Wilkin, "The heart cannot love what the mind does not know." This is from Jen's book Women of the Word, which I am reading through currently.
The author's purpose for writing this devotional is to help us worship Jesus as we gain a greater sense of awe and wonder at who HE is. She also reminds us that God is not disappointed if you miss a day or don't complete it all, "God doesn't make a list, nor does He check it twice."
This book is great for a new person who never practiced to one who has. Each week she provides an introduction to the week's focus, Scripture readings, prayer, response, and discussion questions. At her website https://onethingalone.com/ she provides free printouts so other family members may participate with you. Each days reading includes a short devotional, Bible verse, prayer, challenge, and additional Scripture to read through.