I'm too tired. I forgot. I'm too upset. I don't know what to say. I'm sure the excuses were abundant. I guess I just didn't want it enough. A priest put it in perspective for me in his homily at Mass on Sunday. He spoke in-depth about desire – holy desire – and how important it is in our spiritual journey. Unless we truly desire to change, to transform and to grow closer to God, we won't. It's that simple.
A great beginningBut how do we kindle that desire? By feeding it. Prayer, fasting, learning, journaling. Hmmm. What a wonderful idea! Lorene Hanley Duquin makes it straightforward: "Imagine that you are writing a letter to God. Record the ways you experienced God during the day, and jot down the names of people who need prayers." Easy, right? Well, I have already failed – I did not start this journal on the first day of Advent. Instead, I pushed it aside and decided I would wait until I wrote about it here. But I'm going to keep trying until it sticks. I know how much it can help me grow.
I hope you try a hand at an Advent journal, even if you simply set aside one or two days a week for journaling. It's worth your time.
For more ideas about celebrating a beautiful Advent season, read "Keeping an Advent attitude" by Marge Fenelon or, of course, download the "30 ways to make Advent, Christmas stress-free" by Duquin.