Ron Glusenkamp notes that “Advent is a holy season for review and preview” as we thank God for many things in the past for which we can truly be grateful, and anticipate the future. And from Brian Draper today:
It’s very hard, sometimes, to experience joy when things conspire against us, or when we feel pulled in so many different directions, or when we are worried about what the future will bring. But there is a joy which transcends our circumstances, which is already rising from deeper within, if we stop to notice it.
I remember going on a course on Emotional Intelligence, in which the trainer asked us to name three things for which we could truly be grateful … many in the room struggled… until he emphasised that our life is made up of many more things that we can be grateful for (each breath, use of each muscle, weather, friends, trees…) but that we tend to focus on the difficult stuff … In my first year on antidepressants I kept a ‘thankfulness diary’ – at least 3 things each day that I would write/draw … it really helped, and I keep wondering why I’m not still doing it!
Meantime, Maggi Dawn draws us into the story of Abram’s journey to the promised land – but that the journey into/around that land was more important than ‘possession’. Some interesting thoughts on decluttering (I have been getting rid of more and more stuff) – in that we still take the things we do have with us – wherever we go … so is it time to think about what our ultimate priorities are, and what we are carrying with us? Looking at Pam’s thoughts (poem?) for today – reminds me of the challenge to live in the ‘now’, but not to hold onto those things/places we are at, but trust in the bigger journey!
Dr Bex Lewis is passionate about helping people engage with the digital world in a positive way, where she has more than 20 years’ experience. She is Senior Lecturer in Digital Marketing at Manchester Metropolitan University and Visiting Research Fellow at St John’s College, Durham University, with a particular interest in digital culture, persuasion and attitudinal change, especially how this affects the third sector, including faith organisations, and, after her breast cancer diagnosis in 2017, has started to research social media and cancer. Trained as a mass communications historian, she has written the original history of the poster Keep Calm and Carry On: The Truth Behind the Poster (Imperial War Museum, 2017), drawing upon her PhD research. She is Director of social media consultancy Digital Fingerprint, and author of Raising Children in a Digital Age: Enjoying the Best, Avoiding the Worst (Lion Hudson, 2014; second edition in process) as well as a number of book chapters, and regularly judges digital awards. She has a strong media presence, with her expertise featured in a wide range of publications and programmes, including national, international and specialist TV, radio and press, and can be found all over social media, typically as @drbexl.