Advent Speed Bumps 2016

For the past two years I have offered simple, practical “Advent Speed Bumps” to help us slow down during the Holy-days.  Check out past issues of Whale Spouts here on our website to see suggestions from years gone by.  So, again this year I invite you to take the countercultural stance of slowing down to savor the sacred season of Advent on your journey toward Christmas Day.  

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Sing boldly:  Every morning when you wake up, chose an Advent or Christmas song you enjoy and belt a verse of it out at the top of your lungs.  Note I did not say anything about singing in tune.  Sing with joy, abandon and anticipation of Christmas Day to come. 

Advent e-Fast:  Gift yourself with a technology-free zone for at least one evening each week, in other words, a technology “fast.” Let others know that you are observing an Advent e-Fast and will not be returning texts, emails or calls after a certain time (perhaps from 6pm to 6am).  Instead read a book, linger over dinner with family/friends, take a long walk, pray or even simply go to bed early! 

Gaze at the stars:  Rather than racing into your home one evening, stand outside your door for a moment, look up and gaze at the stars.  Mary and Joseph, shepherds and magi all looked up at this same sky.  Allow these seemingly “timeless” stars, galaxies and planets to remind us of our interconnectedness throughout time and space.  God of all the universe is watching over us all.