Thursday, November 19, 2015

Dwelling in Advent

I am linking up for the Five Minute Friday. The FMF is hosted by Kate Motaung on her blog Heading Home. Today's prompt is "Dwell." Write for five minutes; unedited.

"One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple." Psalm 27:4

Dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life. These words make me think of my friend Laura, and Andrew and all of those who have lived their lives sharing God's love with the world. I am so thankful that my friend Laura has dwelt here in this place all of her days and will continue to dwell there until she takes her last breath and God asks us to lay Laura's mat at his feet.

But as I am reminded of those who dwell in the house of the Lord, I also think of those places that I do not want to dwell either. I do not want to dwell on the news that only seems to be bad news. I would much rather dwell in those joy-filled happy spaces. I do not want to dwell on the evil in the world. There is so much I do not want to dwell on.

Yet as Thanksgiving draws near and Advent is soon upon us, I find myself in a place that I want to dwell. Advent is my most favorite time of the year! I love waiting and watching for this precious Christ child to come. I love sitting and dwelling in this space...this deep breathe of fresh air that reminds me of what comes in this infant; this unlikely son born to an unlikely women in a dirty stable in Bethlehem. This one who comes simply as the light in the midst of the darkness. This one who is Emmanuel--"God with us!"

During the days of Advent, I find that this is a place that I want to dwell as I reflect on the true reason for this season. With all the lights off, Christmas lights twinkling all around me, cup of hot cocoa in my hand, my favorite music playing in the background, I simply dwell in the peace of this season. 

Go Fish-More Than A Story 
(One of my fave Christmas songs. And hopefully you'll forgive me
 for posting a Christmas tune before Thanksgiving!)

44 comments:

  1. Lights! I love Christmas lights and how they represent the Light of the World in the season of darkness. I love getting up extra early and turning the Christmas lights on and dwelling in their beauty and message of hope. May god draw near to you, Tara, as you dwell in him and help your friend Laura.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am a lover of Christmas lights too. I love sitting with all of my lights off and dwelling in the beauty and message of hope too.

      Delete
  2. Tara, it's so easy to let our thoughts dwell where they shouldn't. But, when we dwell on the Lord, that's when we can know His peace. It doesn't mean we stop feeling the pain of those around us, just that we can feel it with the filter of His peace around us. And I'm with you, dwelling on the celebration of Jesus' coming is a great place to dwell. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jeanne, it really is so easy to let our thoughts dwell where they shouldn't. Yes, feeling the pain but also feeling it with Christ's filter of peace around us. I like that image a lot.

      Delete
  3. The lights are my favorite part of Christmas. The darker our world seems to get, the more I enjoy the celebration of Christ. Beautiful post, Tara! :)
    Let's dwell in the joy together!
    Love,
    Tammy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mine too, Tammy! Thank You! And yes, let's dwell in the joy together.

      Delete
  4. hi tara, i see we had some similar thoughts in mind today:) so encouraging to think of Emanuel coming to dwell with us despite the high cost to Him!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Martha, we sure did have similar thoughts.

      Delete
  5. Hi Tara

    I don't want to dwell on the news either! I am thankful that I live in a place where I have the choice of turning the bad stories off - SO thankful!

    We've been so busy getting our new house ready for moving in, I haven't had much of a chance to 'dwell' anywhere - a cup of hot chocolate and some Christmas music would be a welcome change. Oh! They WILL be a welcome change - Christmas is coming! What a wonderful reminder!

    I hope your weekend is full of twinkling lights and music - and hot chocolate!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Janet, I think there are so many of us who do not want to dwell on the news either. So fun that you are moving into a new house. My weekend actually did involve some hot chocolate but no twinkling lights or music yet. I will get them up SOON!

      Delete
  6. Love this, Tara. It is so easy to dwell on the bad news and evil in the world, but so encouraging to focus instead on the fact that Jesus came to dwell with us and shine light into the darkness.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Carly! Jesus did come to dwell with us and shine light into the darkness. I am so very thankful for that.

      Delete
  7. Hi Tara. What a wonderful season we are entering. I'm looking forward to it too. Thanks for sharing your joy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am looking forward to it too!

      Delete
  8. Thank-you for turning me to Advent. This is where I want to dwell in the next weeks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are so welcome! That is where I want to dwell too!

      Delete
  9. I love the song never heard it before. Thanks for sharing!! Advent is my favorite time of the year too. This year I bought an advent kit from a lady at my church and can't wait until Dec 1st hits so we can start it!! As always, praying for Laura and all of her family and friends.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am so glad that you loved the song. It is one of my absolute faves! You are going to have so much fun with your Advent kit. And thanks for the prayers for Laura, her family and friends. It is so greatly appreciated!

      Delete
  10. You, my other daughter, are choosing the right thing. You just dwell right there, at HIS FEET, in the quiet with the twinkle lights, and your cuppa of hot cocoa - and HE will be pleased. Well done, Tara, well done.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks "adopted" Mom! xoxo

      Delete
  11. This is so beautiful! The image of sitting and dwelling and drawing in close to God is comforting and filled with peace. Praying we all find this calm and quiet during Advent this year.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mary, thank you! Yes may we all find calm and quiet during Advent this year.

      Delete
  12. I love the Thanksgiving, Advent and Christmas season as well...I don't always "decorate" for it anymore...it is way toooo much work for just me and my hubby; nobody comes to our apartment anyway, and I have Christmas in my heart. I do try to put out a couple of my Nativities; and that's all I need to be reminded of the time of year...and then, ignore the things we do not want to dwell on...yet, sometimes, the "not so lovely" comes to us anyway.

    Thanks for sharing! I am still working on getting mine together...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I collect Nativities so that is one of my fave things to put out. I can totally understand not decorating in your small space and it being too much work. You indeed do have Christmas in your heart and really that is the most important.

      Delete
  13. Dwell is an interesting word, thanks for writing on this. We all have a choice, no matter our circumstances, on what to dwell, so I will dwell on all the many people, places and things to be thankful for each day. Above all, to dwell in His presence!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dwell really is an interesting word..not one that we use often, is it? We do indeed all have a choice. Yes, may we dwell in God's presence.

      Delete
  14. Advent and Christmas are my favorites, too! I didn't grow up celebrating Advent; it was only when the hubby and I joined the Church of the Nazarene a few years ago that we began observing the season, but even then it's only been the last couple of years that we've had the candles and done the readings in our home each evening. I love the sense of peace mingled with anticipation.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mine too! I love that you light the candles and do the readings in your home each evening. I too love the sense of peace mingled with anticipation. Last night I was reading in Mandy Hale's book "Beautiful Uncertainty" (It's a pre-release that Susan picked up for me at Allume!) and she talks about Advent and being single and waiting. It was my fave chapter so far!

      Delete
  15. Just reading your last paragraph gave me such a feeling of peace and calm. I think Advent is one of my most favorite times of the year, too. So much we don't want to dwell on, but keeping our eyes on God will bring peace and comfort.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Gayl, thank you! Sounds like Advent is a favorite for many of us FMF writers. I love that! Yes let's keep our eyes on God which will bring us comfort and peace.

      Delete
  16. I love you so. That is all (only, you know... so not!) ;) Praying for you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love you so too. That is all (only you know...so not!) ;) Thanks for the prayers friend.

      Delete
  17. Continued prayers for you and your friend Laura. You are dearly loved.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The prayers are so greatly appreciated for Laura and her family and friends. You too are so dearly love, Sam!

      Delete
  18. Beautiful post, Tara. Especially love:
    "This one who comes simply as the light in the midst of the darkness. This one who is Emmanuel--"God with us!"
    Oh how we all desperately need His Light, in the darkness of this world and in the weight of grief, pain and heartache within and around us.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anna, that is one of my fave lines too! We do desperately need His light in this dark world full of grief, pain and heartache.

      Delete
  19. Thank you for your words to remind us what the Advent season is for! I tend to get tired when the decorations go up before Thanksgiving and the commercialism of the season surrounds us. Thanks for the reminder to shift perspectives friend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know it makes me weary too. You are so welcome. I hope it reminds us all to shift perspectives.

      Delete
  20. Tara, it is sooo hard to be looking at the news and our news feeds. I have been trying to ignore most of it while staying relatively informed, definitely difficult, BUT I can't let it bring me down because THAT gives Satan a hold on me that I just don't want to give him. I know you feel the same. I am excited for Advent too. Oddly, Christmas itself is my least favorite thing to celebrate but I LOVE Advent, lighting the candles, reading the scripture and the leading up to the day that we receive the GIFT!! I have a lot of reasons for disliking Christmas itself, the main one being how it has become so secular and is so heavily focused on spending money. When the kids are grown I am excited to spend Christmas as it should be, celebrating in the birth of our Saviour without the debt and bills and commercial indulgences. Praying you are doing well!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Marisa, wise words...we cannot let the bad news bring us down. I am so glad you are excited for Advent too. I am doing well. Hope you are doing well too.

      Delete
  21. Love this post, Tara...and I am so sorry that it took me so long to get here. Really nasty few days.

    But looking forward to Advent!

    http://blessed-are-the-pure-of-heart.blogspot.com/2015/11/your-dying-spouse-85-con-thien

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Andrew, glad you loved this post. No worries about taking so long to get here. I am just glad you made it here after your last few days. I too am looking forward to Advent.

      Delete
  22. Tara,
    I love sitting in the dark with my Christmas tree all lit up, too. Beautiful post.

    Lynette
    ~#99 this week

    ReplyDelete

Your comments totally make my day!