Daily Archives: December 16, 2018

December 16 – Advent Study Day 17

“Advent is one of the hardest seasons of the church year to celebrate in today’s culture. As soon as Thanksgiving arrives, we are bombarded by Christmas carols, Christmas decorations, Christmas everything. We are so saturated by Christmas that we often skip over one of the most important parts: the preparation. You wouldn’t throw a party without preparing the food and drinks; you wouldn’t visit a friend without getting dressed and ready. We are about to remember the most awe-inspiring thing that happened in the whole of history: God becoming man in the glory and mystery of the incarnation. We need to set aside time to prepare ourselves for this – internally and externally” (excerpt from Rachel Telander’s “Let Us Keep the Feast”)

Join us as we prepare for Christmas with an Advent Study based on Selah Woody’s “A Traditional Advent Calendar: 28 Days of Devotions and Activities”. Each day of the study, we will post the scripture to focus on, ideas for discussion and activities with your family, and an example SOAP from our team based on the day’s scripture. If you’d like to see the full daily devotion from Selah Woody’s study, you can get the free download through Focus on the Family HERE.

Join our study by reading today’s scripture below and journaling about it using SOAP (click on the “What’s SOAP?” link above to learn more). Then, read and discuss the verse with your family around the dinner table, in the car, before bed, or another time when you can be in intentional devotion to Jesus. We love hearing from you! Please use the comment section of our website to share your SOAP, thoughts on the verse, discussion with your family, or your favorite Christmas traditions. Join us as we build unity and community through God’s Word!

Advent Study Day 17

Luke 2:9-11

An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.

Psalm 126:2-3

Our mouths were filled with laughter,
    our tongues with songs of joy.
Then it was said among the nations,
    “The Lord has done great things for them.”
The Lord has done great things for us,
    and we are filled with joy.

Discussion/Activity Ideas

This week, you will light two of the purple candles and the pink candle. Pink symbolizes joy. This week of Advent is an invitation to transition from preparation to the celebration of the nearness of Christ’s birth. To help realize the abundant joy brought to Bethlehem by the angels’ announcement, make angel cookies. Spread the angel cookies across your table to help get a feel for the magnificence of the heavenly hosts on the night Jesus was born.


JOY!!! | Marianne Toovey


Psalm 126:3


Joy to the world! The Lord is come! Let earth receive her King, let every heart prepare Him room, and heaven and nature sing!


It’s the candle of Joy! Woohoo! What a remarkable thing to celebrate each December! Joy would be impossible on earth if it weren’t for the relationship with Jesus made possible through his birth, life, death, and resurrection. But joy is actually often hard to find this time of year. Calendars are full to the brim. Children (and adults) are overtired and hopped up on sugar – a dangerous combination that leads to short tempers. Families can’t set aside differences. Finances are in peril. So. Much. Pressure. But that’s not what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown. Linus got it right. 2,000 years ago, a promise made became a promise kept. Light now shines in the darkness. That little baby celebrated this time of year saved the world. That’s amazing! That’s wonderful! Joy to the world!


God, don’t let me get bogged down with to-do lists and the pressure of commercialism. Lift my head high above the stress. Help me to find joy this Christmas – real joy, Your joy. Keep my focus where it belongs. Thank You so much for making Joy possible in my life! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

The Discover One Thing main website follows a reading plan that goes through the entire Bible in one year. Click HERE to check out today’s Discover One Thing post.