Monday, December 12, 2011

Seeds of Kindness

This month, we've been talking about anticipating the Savior... preparing our hearts for the Christ child. And I started thinking... As a mother, how can I guide my children to prepare for His coming? 

At this age, I think it involves practical application.  So...

We can read the story, again and again. From the beginning. See how every story whispers His name.  Wait as the barn slowly fills. Mary. Then Joseph.  It won't be long now.

We can emphasize parts of the story with activities, an attempt to wrap our little brains around the greatness of this God-love.  The Light of the World pierced through the darkness of sin like the smallest candle lights up our windowless, downstairs bathroom... and that small illumination lights up their small faces.  They are starting to see... 

This Advent season, we planted seeds.  One seed planted for every act of His love displayed to others to remind us how He displayed His love to all the people – from the barn to the tree. 

And when these seeds of kindness sprout love in full by Christmas Day, we will have a bed to lay a Babe, the Savior of the world.  "We're growing the hay for Jesus, Mama?" "Yes, baby, we're preparing for His coming." And her look says it all.  Preparing is an action... and I can grow a place for Him.
Don't all of these things and countless more help me prepare? When I turn my focus on Him and anticipate His work within, isn't this when He crashes in like a hurricane?  When I let the world fall right out of that heart space God has been waiting to consume? Because if I make space, isn't that preparing for Someone to occupy it? 

Oh, wait, though... this was about the children.  But, isn't this how they will learn to prepare? To see within my heart this authentic relationship with the Christ child that grows and stretches me to go and make disciples of all nations, beginning with my children.  How?  By investing in authentic relationships with these tender hearts from everyday moments to Christmas traditions.  By showing them the love of Christ, by harboring this deep-rooted desire to plant seeds of kindness in their little hearts and see what God can grow.  To anticipate His coming... not only in my own heart, but in theirs as well.

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