By: Amanda Carter, MA, LPC
Four hundred years…the time between the Old Testament and the tangible presence of Jesus in the New Testament. It is reasonable to assume at that point, people had forgotten about a promised Messiah. And to be fair, 400 years is a really long time to wait! Just think of the past 2 years of living in a pandemic and how you have felt with all the unanswered questions and seemingly endless waiting it has brought. I would encourage you during this season of Advent to carve out time for both reflection and anticipation. Reflect on how you are feeling. Is there anything you have been waiting for and perhaps even given up on ever coming to fruition? Has this led to disappointment, discouragement, or even bitterness? Bring all of this reflection to the One who willingly came to earth to bring hope. Then, anticipate. As we age, we often give up dreaming, particularly big dreams. But Jesus’ birth shows us that he likes to bring light into darkness and awaken our dreams again. I personally enjoy going through this practice as I look at Christmas lights. Have you noticed that people seem to want to put up their trees and decorations earlier the past two years? I think in part, it is because we are desperate for beauty and joy, and something about those lights reminds us of the Light of the World. The lyrics of Matt Redman’s song, “These Christmas Lights” comes to mind-
“Sing again, the sacred song of
How that star lit up the sky
And how the world, lost in the darkness
Felt the hope of, Heaven’s light
Open my eyes; O heart believe
The wonder of, that Christmas night
Be born in me”
Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
By Amanda Carter, MA, LPC
We as Christians are now in the season of Easter, the 50-day period starting on Easter and ending on Pentecost Sunday. It is a season of celebration and renewal as is the natural season of Spring. Also, in a possible season of renewal – our world. To me, there appears to be a renewed sense of hope among us that perhaps we are coming to the end of the pandemic that has gripped the world over the past year.
What can you and I do to both guard and guide as we move into this season of renewal? Here are some practical ways to practice renewal/celebration which are meaningful:
My encouragement to you is to engage in some of the above practices and experience the renewal your heart likely desires.
Happy Season of Renewal!
Legacy strategy Blog
Legacy Strategy, Inc. is a private counseling practice in Kennesaw, Georgia.