Advent Resources

What is Advent?

The Christian season of Christmas actually begins on Christmas Eve and lasts for twelve days, ending on January 6, that’s actually where the song, “The 12 Days of Christmas” came from. Advent is the time leading up to Christmas and traditionally is a season of preparation for Christmas. Christians prepare for celebrating the birth of Jesus by remembering the longing of the Jews for a Messiah. In Advent, we celebrate Jesus’ first coming at Christmas as our Savior, and we look forward to our Savior’s second coming as Judge of the “quick and the dead.” Thus we pass this time in repentance for our sin and joy for our salvation. The word “Advent” comes from the Latin word adventus, which means “coming” or “visit.” In Advent, we keep in mind both “advents” of Christ, the first in Bethlehem and the second yet to come, as we prepare Him room in our hearts, our families, our churches, and our community.

How can I “Prepare Him Room?”

There are thousands of ways that Christians have found to observe Advent and keep Christ central to Christmas. What follows are several resources to help you find creative ways to connect Jesus to your heart, your family, your church, and your community.

The Advent wreath first appeared in Germany in 1839. A Lutheran minister working at a mission for children created a wreath out of the wheel of a cart. He placed twenty small red candles and four large white candles inside the ring. The red candles were lit on weekdays and the four white candles were lit on Sundays. 

Eventually, the Advent wreath was created out of evergreens, symbolizing everlasting life in the midst of winter and death as the evergreen is continuously green. The circle reminds us of God’s unending love and the eternal life He makes possible.

The Advent wreath is a symbol of the season, with a candlelit each of the four Sundays leading up to, and on Christmas Day. The light of the flickering candle flames reminds us who Jesus is: “In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” (John 1:4-5). Advent candles are often nestled in the evergreen wreath.

Laura Richie of Crosswalk.com
Explanation, Verses, and Prayers for Each Week of Advent
Learn more about the symbolism of each part of the wreath.

YOUNG FAMILIES: includes one devotion and family activity for each week of Advent.
APOLOGETICS: you can sign up online to enjoy the same study we are doing in Sunday School.
YOUNG FAMILIES: Use the Jesus Story Bible to see how the prophecies and stories from the Old Testament point to Jesus’ birth. Includes an ornament for each day.
FAMILIES: Focus on the Family has several family resources you can use this Advent season including this 26 day devotion guide.
FAMILIES: Each day’s short readings, discussion questions and prayer prompts will inspire you and your family to put Jesus at the center of Christmas.
EVANGELISM: We desire to help you prepare for Christmas as you create space for God to enter your heart this Advent season. We also hope to introduce you to, or remind you of, our deep love and commitment to the frontier: the 2+ billion people worldwide who have not yet heard the Good News of Jesus Christ and the hope, peace, joy and love He brings. 
Imagine a birthday party where everyone got presents except the Birthday Boy.

Below are some of the books that may be checked out for the duration of Advent by emailing secretary@oaklandpresbyterianchurch.org
To see the entire list of available books to check out with descriptions, click here.