Advent is both about Jesus’ first coming in Bethlehem and his second coming, which we await. In the weeks leading up to Christmas, we remember his first advent and prepare for his second, celebrating both events. Centered around the themes of preparation, anticipation, joy, and incarnation, Anticipating His Arrival helps you guide your family through Advent as your expectation of Jesus’ arrival grows.
Family devotional time can be difficult which is why this resource was designed to fit a variety of needs and your schedule. Scripture readings are provided for the entire Advent season, from the first Sunday of Advent through Christmas Day. Each day, discussion questions and responses are provided to guide individual reflection or family discussion. The daily readings in this devotional come from the Revised Common Lectionary and include readings for all three years in the liturgical cycle—each drawing from the synoptic gospels.
“Preparation is important. If you believe something will happen, you prepare for it. If a hurricane is coming, you board up your house and evacuate the area. If we believe that Jesus, the Son of Man, is returning, then we should prepare for it.” (source)
“Preparing for Advent means looking ahead to the return of Christ. It means to live in faith that he will return. It means leaving the ‘nighttime things’ to the night, and even though it is still night, living as if it is daytime. It involves loving others because Christ loved us.” (source)
“A few years later, my wife and I became involved in a new church plant, and I decided to write a short devotional for Advent for church families to use. The church even printed a limited run, and it was well received.” (source)
“We live in times marked by sin and its effects. It oozes into every part of our actions and thoughts and affects how we all interact with each other. When Christ returns, he will remove sin’s hold on us, and God will look on us through the eyes of Christ. How incredible that will be! And how can we not look to that time with anticipation?” (source)
“Jerusalem at peace (shalom) reminds us of the return of the Lord. As the pilgrims to Jerusalem prayed for the city to be at peace and cherished their arrival in its gates, so we should look forward to the return of our Lord, preparing our hearts for his return.” (source)
Rick Brannan is the translator of The Apostolic Fathers in English, author and translator of Greek Apocryphal Gospels, Fragments, and Agrapha, and managing editor of the Lexham English Septuagint. He has also published Greek Reader Editions of the Acts of Pilate and the First Apocryphal Apocalypse of John. He is currently researching the Greek text of the Shepherd of Hermas for a forthcoming publication.