Day 1 Christmas Reading: Off To The Races


I don’t know about you, but I generally dread December 1 because, in my mind, it’s the official start of the holiday season. I use the phrase “holiday season” specifically because it embodies all of the obligations and traditions that, when you stop and really think about it, have nothing to do with the sacred birth of our Savior. But nonetheless, all these obligations fall on me.

For example, everyone has a holiday party: the community organizations where my husband and I volunteer, our workplaces, our friends. On top of parties, there are Christmas cards, Christmas cookies, our hunt for a real Christmas tree, our yearly outing to see the Christmas lights at that one house on that one corner that sets one hundred thousand lights to music. These traditions get layered on top of already-busy schedules involving school and sports and work.

All these extra traditions, on their own, are fun and joyous and filled with giggles, messes, and memories. But when they’re all piled up in the short few weeks between December 1 and Christmas morning, I can’t help but start feeling like a bad mom, a bad wife, and a bad Christian for not juggling this month with a cheerful smile, a cute apron, and Pinterest perfection.

In response to all the busyness this season brings, I’ve discovered that when I make a conscious effort to focus more on Advent—preparing my heart and mind for Christ’s birth, and helping my family to do the same—and less on the neverending to-do lists, I strike a better balance. Finding extra moments to withdraw from the rat race and simply sit in the presence of Christ—worshiping, remembering the significance of Christ’s birth, and kneeling before the Lord—makes me a better mom, wife, and friend during the rest of the busy day. I am better able to handle the tasks of the holiday season with kindness rather than frustration, because my heart and head are focused on Advent.

— Julie

Today’s Act of Kindness

Fill yourself up by spending time with Christ during Advent, and allow that fullnes to flow out as kind words and actions toward others.


This is an excerpt from The One Year Daily Acts of Kindness Devotional, now available at OMF Lit and Passages Bookshops, PCBS, and our online store, for only P365.

What would happen if you and your family committed to doing one act of kindness each day for a year? 

Our world desperately needs more kindness. Whether it’s on social media, in the news, or between your arguing kids it can seem like conflict and disconnection are everywhere. But imagine how much better life would be if we got intentional about being kind!

This year, embark on a journey to make kindness a part of your life, home, and soul. In The One Year Daily Acts of Kindness Devotional, you’ll find Scripture passages and inspirational personal stories about why God calls us to show kindness, what it means to live a life of generosity, and how you can incorporate kindness into your everyday routine (and teach it to your kids) with tons of simple, easy-to-do ideas.

Show your world the kind of love that is possible with daily acts of kindness that will change your heart, inspire your family, and draw you closer to God.