God is with us!

Recently, I was in Hungary. The focus of the trip was the Christmas Markets and we were there just as Advent was beginning. We had great traveling companions and wonderful foods. All of the photos I am using for the PrayerPoints for Advent are from this trip. Actually, the idea of what to use for the photos came from being on the trip.

Advent is a thing in Hungary.

I have never seen so many different Advent candle configurations! In the city center — 3 feet in diameter — along with a lighting ceremony for the 1st candle, in the village center made out of large painted trash cans (3 pink and 1 purple), in wineries, and in gift shops, large and small. The countdown to Christmas is on by way of the Advent wreath! And while we were there to experience the Christmas Markets and some other fun seasonal opportunities, it did not feel quite as crazy commercial to me. I was a little disappointed that there were some Black Friday specials — I wish they wouldn’t embrace that concept or McDonald’s, Burger King, or Starbucks either.

As I was traveling, it was lovely to have so many reminders that God was, indeed, with me! Of course I know it. He always is. But, it was so refreshing to see that others knew it too! Having the Advent wreaths everywhere I went was an unanticipated blessing.

“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”
Deuteronomy 6:4-9 ESV

Come, Lord Jesus!

One thought on “Emmanuel

  1. The commercialism associated with Christmas and Easter is overwhelming. I know people have to earn a living and small children are not old enough for more complex understanding, but what are we teaching our children by the over indulgence of presents and cartoon characters Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny? I know that Saint Nicholas was a real person and saint but the increasing emphasis on this character has overshadowed Christ’s birth. It is a wonderful surprise to hear that Hungary celebrates with the Advent Wreath. Here where I live it is rarely seen, so in my own celebration of Christmas the emphasis is the birth of Christ, God’s most precious gift to us. My advent wreath is simple, candles in candle holders, the display of the Holy Family in my Nativity. I try to keep that in mind during Advent, try to be the personal ambassador of Christ in every way I can. All the best , hug the babies!

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