It’s winter! Join AMBrewster as he lays out The Celebration of God’s three-month plan for celebrating and discipling during the Season of Grace. Advent, Christmas, and Valentines make for one of the jolliest seasons of the year!
The Year Long Celebration of God is a family resource from Truth.Love.Parent., a ministry dedicated to rooting families in God and maturing families for God so they can harvest blessings from God.
Discover the following episodes by clicking the titles or navigating to the episode in your app:
“COG 11: The Seasons in the Celebration of God”
“COG 13: The Season of Grace”
“COG 16: Your Celebration Wall”
Like us on Facebook.
Follow us on Instagram.
Follow AMBrewster on Parler.
Follow AMBrewster on Twitter.
Click "Read More" for today’s Episode Notes and Transcript.
Click the link below to download the PDF.
It’s almost December! It’s almost winter!
I know, if you’re anything like my wife (and you happen to live in the Northern Hemisphere), this is not your favorite time of year because it gets so cold.
But our celebratory focus of the Season is one of the most joyful and happy times of the entire year. It should be more than enough to warm you from the inside out.
Today we lay out our three-month plan to celebrate God’s grace, and I’m thrilled that you’ve joined us.
By the way, if you’re new to the show, you should follow us on social media. The Celebration of God is on Instagram and Facebook, and — if you interact with either of those on a regular basis — it’s a fantastic way to help you intentionally worship God all day long.
All throughout the day we post content designed to help you glory in the Lord. We will call you to take a moment to celebrate one of God’s marvelous deeds or one of His glorious character traits.
We encourage you — when you see our posts — just to stop and thank the Lord for how awesome He is.
The Bible commands us to pray without ceasing, and following The Celebration of God on social media is just one way to help you keep the conversation with God going.
And don’t forget about today’s free episode notes and transcript on our blog at CelebrationOfGod.com.
Now, I know it’s only 4 days before December 1st, but don’t worry, you’ll have plenty of time to prepare.
So, let’s get started.
The reason I decided to start with Advent instead of the Season of Grace was two-fold. First, Advent officially started this year during November which means it started before the Season of Grace. But second, I knew that a lot of you are new to Advent, and I wanted to make sure you had time to prepare for something that was going to take up a large chunk of your Celebration Wall.
Not only that, I think prepping your Wall for winter is one of those things that you’re probably already ready to do.
I know there are some people who start decorating for Christmas right after Halloween. Now, though I don’t do that myself, I can’t judge them too much because my kids and I will listen to Christmas music all year long.
In fact, I’ve scarred my kids for life because one of the things they love to do when they’re mowing the lawn in the middle of summer is listen to Christmas music.
Anyway, I love Autumn and Thanksgiving too much to crowd it out of our schedule and our decorating, so I comfortably fit into the category of individuals who decorates for Christmas as soon as Thanksgiving is over.
Now, I know some of you wait even longer . . . because you’re Scrooges . . . but that’s okay too.
However, if we’re going to invest in the celebration of God during Advent, I believe it will work much better to change up the Celebration Wall after Thanksgiving.
So, let’s talk about . . .
1. Preparing for the Season of Grace.
Like I already mentioned, I plan to change up my Celebration Wall as soon after Thanksgiving as possible. I’m thinking a garland and white lights as the boarder at least.
I still haven’t decided how we’re going to do our version of the Advent Countdown, but it will likely involve the garland boarder instead of an Advent Calendar or Jesse Tree.
But, always remember, the most important thing you can have on your Celebration Wall is God’s Word.
The Celebration Wall is a special place in our homes, classrooms, churches, and offices that acts as a memorial. We see it, and our minds are drawn to God and His will for our lives.
During winter — among other things — we want our minds to be drawn to His grace.
Each of the holidays this Season drip with God’s grace. Advent is about anticipating His coming to earth and His future return. The 12 Days of Christmas celebrate His incarnation, and Valentines celebrates His indescribable love!
Each of those are amazing gifts we do not deserve. And that’s what grace is. It’s unmerited favor. It’s God giving us what we don’t deserve.
Now, if you’re knew to the show, I highly recommend you work through our introductory episodes, but if you can’t do that right away, you should at least catch our episode about the Season of Grace and the one about your Celebration Wall. And I’ve linked those in the description for you so you can locate them easily.
As always, I’ll have a Bible Reading List at CelebrationOfGod.com that can guide what passages you place on your Celebration Wall as well as what passages you and your disciplees read to prepare your hearts.
But allow me to share a couple with you now. I think all of these would be a fantastic choice for you and your community to commit to memory.
Psalm 84:11, “For the Lord God is a sun and shield; The Lord gives grace and glory; No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly.”
II Corinthians 9:8, “And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed.”
Ephesians 2:8, “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9 not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.”
And those are just a tiny peek into the lavish truth of God’s grace.
I believe all true Christians — when they hear verses like that — can’t help but start praising the Lord in their hearts.
And that’s the goal of Preparation. We want to get our minds ready to focus on Him. We want to get our plans in place and our schedules in order so that we can worship God uninterrupted.
And, yes, that right there can sound overwhelming when it comes to Christmas.
Even if Advent weren’t a concern, and you were only planning to celebrate one day of Christmas, the planning and buying of presents and hosting and cooking and the like can send people into a chaotic or alternatively catatonic state.
But, my friends, God offers you grace. He’s given us everything we need for life and godliness in His Word. We don’t need to freak out. There is more than enough grace for you to navigate this season in a way that pleases the Lord, matures you, and benefits those in your life.
And one of the best ways to enter this season with a peaceful heart is this:
A. Make a plan.
I will never have enough to say about the importance of intentionality. Human beings don’t improvise well. We need to premeditatedly purpose to only do those things that are valuable and dismiss the activities that aren’t.
And that means that we have to have a vey specific plan. So . . .
B. Make sure God is at the center of that plan.
I was in a recent Facebook debate with a friend who claimed that Facebook should be allowed to censor harmful posts. And — of course — I had to ask who gets to define what “harmful” is?
Mankind’s biggest problem is that they want to do God’s job. They want to define terms, they want to determine what is right and wrong. They want to dictate what they — and everyone else — is supposed to do.
When we apply this thinking to Christmas, everyone is going to have some sort of plan that seeks to accomplish what they want. But what if everyone else’s plans disagree? What if no one wants your family to visit them for Christmas because it would be easier on them? What if everyone wants you at their Christmas party? What if your children don’t believe being thankful for their gifts is important? What if your in-laws want to buy your third grader a phone?
And these are just the silly examples.
But when everyone makes God’s plan their plan, it is much easier to unify and work with each other. You’ll have more people serving and loving and thanking and working hard and praising the Lord.
So, whatever you choose to do this Season, have a plan and make sure God is at its center.
2. Celebrating the Season of Grace, and . . .
3. Discipling during the Season of Grace.
This season’s salvation focus is on Glorification. It’s the grand and gorgeous fulfillment of God’s redemptive plan. It should be at the center of our Season of Grace discussions and celebrations because we need to fall deeper in love with the fact that — even though we’re all wicked sinners — God plans to free us from our bondage to sin and perfect us.
We’ll talk more about this later this season, but — let me tell you — there is no end to the opportunities to discuss glorification. Advent is all about it. Christmas celebrates the start of it, and Valentines is the root of it.
Now a lot of the illustrations I’ve used today have been about Advent and Christmas, but let’s talk specifically about the Season of Grace.
The Seasonal elements should stay on the Celebration Wall for the full three months even as the other holidays rotate on and off. And the general discussion concerning God’s grace should also continue.
Therefore, a good plan will involve discussing God’s grace throughout the Season. At the barest minimum, I would recommend memorizing a verse about God’s grace and reviewing it throughout the Season.
Then — during each of the holidays — I would suggest discussing with your disciplees how that particular holiday is a celebration of God’s grace.
And — beyond that — you could try monthly, weekly, or daily focusing your mind and the minds of your disciplees on God’s grace.
I recommend praying and talking to God about His grace. You could compile lists of the ever-present grace of God in your life. You could read the many passages that describe and illustrate His grace.
The point is, there’s plenty to do. You can focus as much as you’d like on God’s grace from December through February and on into eternity!
Perhaps your church could take a time every Wednesday night or during small group to specifically praise God for His grace in their lives.
You could have your students write a paper about God’s grace. Depending on their age and ability, the paper could be about biblical grace in general or an example of that grace in their own experience.
As I said, there are many possibilities, and I leave it up to your imagination. And we’d all love to hear how you and your disciplees are focusing on grace this Season.
As you can tell, I’m very excited about this new Season. The Season of Mercy was so important and vital to our discipleship, but the Season of Grace wants to take us even further.
Please follow us on Facebook and Instagram, and — while you’re there — share this episode with your friends.
And join us next time as we all do a checkup to see how well we’re celebrating God.
The Year Long Celebration of God is a dynamic, holistic resource that utilizes the Bible, our holiday calendars, and even the most average moments of the most normal days to equip Christians to worship God all year long
and disciple others to do the same.
AMBrewster is the creator and host of the Celebration of God. He originally designed the COG to be a discipleship tool for Christian parents to train their children to know and love God, but he quickly realized how valuable it is for all Christians. Whether it's a small group, church, classroom, one-on-one, or community relationship, this resource is guaranteed to draw people closer together as they draw closer to God.
Aaron is the President of Truth.Love.Parent. and host of its podcast.