The season of Advent is almost here and we’ve got a simple way that you can celebrate the season at home – put together an Advent Wreath!
Advent is a season of preparation for Jesus’ coming – both His coming at Christmas AND His coming again at the end of time. An ancient tradition in the church is to use an Advent Wreath consisting of four or five candles, lighting one new candle each week through the four weeks of Advent until all of them are lit the week of Christmas. As the light from the wreath grows brighter and brighter each week, it reminds us that Jesus, the light of the world, is closer and closer to His return.
An Advent Wreath doesn’t need to use an actual wreath – it can simply be four or five candles that you gather together in one place and use to mark the weeks.
There are many different traditions for the colors of the candles, each with their own symbolism. The oldest is to use all white or natural colored candles to remind us of the purity of Jesus and the renewal He brings. A later tradition was to use three purple candles and one pink candle. Purple is a royal color and reminds us of our King of kings. It’s also a “penitential” color – or a sorrowful color. It reminds us of the reason Jesus came – to save us from our sin. The pink candle, lit on the third week, is a joyful color. Even in a penitential season, there’s reason to rejoice! More recently, blue candles have become popular in place of purple. Blue is a color associated with hope, which Jesus brings at Christmas. If a fifth candle is used, it’s always white because it’s lit on Christmas Eve and symbolizes Christ, the light of the world. But just because these colors are “traditional,” doesn’t mean you can’t use something different!
Whatever color candles you decide to use, place them in a spot where you can gather around them as a family – on a coffee table, on the dinner table, or somewhere similar. Remember – make sure it’s a safe place if you’re using real candles! Then use your Advent Wreath as a gathering place for family devotions throughout the season.
Some Creative Ideas
Check out more unique ideas for your home Advent Wreath on Pinterest.