Last year, we had a great Christmas. It was busy and full of really fun activities and traditions. There were parties and Santa visits, decorating and shopping, baking and all around just celebrating. But celebrating what? All throughout the season, and this entire year since, I have felt so convicted about how little we celebrated Christ's birth, and what that birth means for us this past year. I mean, I kept meaning to refocus our family, but then things would always get in the way and before I know it, we were digging into another present or singing another rousing rendition of "Santa clause is coming to town." I don't think those things are wrong; but I did nothing to suggest that those things were only a by- product of the joy I have in the birth of a Savior, My King. And that is so wrong. And such an incomplete picture of the plan God has for us. We were MADE to worship- how can we worship Him all year long if we can't recognize and rejoice in the birth of the son He sent to save us!
So anyway, I have been very intrigued by the Jesse Tree advent tradition ever since I heard about it a few years ago. The Jesse tree is basically Jesus' family tree. It gives the lineage from the Old Testament to the birth of Christ; and in essence gives the plan of salvation through it. The advent tradition gives a story a day, starting with the creation and ending on Christmas Day with Jesus' birth.
A friend gave me the link to the Jesse advent using the Jesus Storybook Bible, which is my absolute favorite children's Bible anyway so of course, I immediately decided this was it. This book has a way of pointing to Jesus in every story, from old to New Testament anyway, so I am so excited to see how 25 days of this will change my (our) focus this Christmas.
Another element of the Jesse tree tradition is hanging a different ornament on a tree to represent each Bible story. I found a printable for ornaments that I plan on laminating and using in some way. Did I mention I am excited?!!
If you would like to take a look at what I am doing- here is where I found it!