This year we have started a new tradition in the Andersen home with the lighting of Advent candles. Every night Chris reads to Cadence out of the Jesus Storybook Bible - something every family with small children should own - but we wanted to really focus on God coming to earth this season and how that plays out in our world. Or at least as much as we could make it work in Cadence's 3 year old brain. So, after much research we found this Advent family devotional that we adapted to fit the Andersen's for this year.
Cadence has loved the candles - lighting them, staring at them, and playing in the smoke afterwards like she does HERE :) She has appropriated a candle to each of us and so on Sunday nights when we light a new one she will say "oh this is Shaunie's candle" or "we're lighting mommy's candle now" Hers is the pink one and so she's been pretty bummed that it still hasn't been lit. But that will all change this week.......
On a more spiritual note, it has been fun to watch her really "get it." To play with baby Jesus, "Mary mother to Jesus", and also talk to her babies and barbies during the day about the importance of loving her family and friends like Jesus would - just like her daddy does with her at night. I LOVE that Jesus has become so accessible to her - not a far off creature that we talk about but someone who is becoming more and more a part of her every day conversation - with us and her other "friends" (the barbies and babies)
Personally, I think that it has been really helpful to focus every night as a family on Jesus coming and what that did to the world over all and our individual worlds as well. I know for me with all the hectic-ness of the holidays, having a 3 yr old and a sick 4 month old in the house, plus teaching lessons, managing our home and all that that involves, I have really enjoyed this Advent season knowing that Jesus came to join us in this hectic-ness in order to be our Savior and our Peace in the chaos. After so much reflection this month as a family on Jesus and what His coming to earth accomplished I find myself more than ever looking forward to His return and find myself singing o Come, o Come Emmanuel longing to see Jesus, my Peace Hope and Life-sustainer, face to face.