Ready or not, the countdown to Christmas has officially begun. As we prepare our homes, trees, and kitchens, let’s also prepare our hearts to worship the newborn King. I pray this list of resources will enhance your reading, listening, and family-devotion pleasure.
Some of these resources are free, and others are available for purchase. Consider your Christmas list as you read through these hand-picked and holy leisure-focused resources.
Every Longing Heart
EMAIL & VY SERIES: Every Longing Heart: Treasure the Newborn King this Christmas by Cara Ray
In Charles Wesley’s famous Christmas hymn, “Come, Thou Long Expected Jesus,” we sing that Jesus is the joy of every longing heart. This Advent, discover how the divine orchestration of human events and various responses to his coming, exposes the longing of our hearts. From kings and rulers to shepherds and expectant virgins, Jesus’ advent reveals what we treasure. Find him the joy of your heart this Christmas.
You can enjoy this email series in 2 ways. Choose the one that works best for you!
Countdown to Christmas
DEVOTIONAL: Countdown to Christmas: Unwrap the Christmas Story with your Family in 15 Days by Lisa Appelo
Bring the story of Christmas to life in a meaningful, new way for your whole family with this Advent devotional. Countdown to Christmas will prepare hearts young and old to celebrate the Savior with the wonder of Jesus. Each reading in this Advent devotional includes the Bible passage, a rich devotional application, a guided prayer, and a relevant Christmas carol that matches one piece of your Nativity set you’ll build over 15 days.
Light in the Darkness: Advent Reflections on the Character of God
EMAIL SERIES: Light in the Darkness: Advent Reflections on the Character of God by Amy Simon and Rose Jordan
In this 4-Sunday devotional, meditate on the names of God. Each one gives us insight into his character and helps us connect with who he is in our lives. The more we understand his true nature, the more we are drawn into worship and into a deeper relationship with him.
The names we’ll be delving into come from the song “Waymaker” written originally by Nigerian singer, songwriter, and worship leader Sinach.
Light in the Darkness
25 Days to Jesus
DEVOTIONAL: 25 Days to Jesus: A daily journey to Jesus in a Chaotic season of Commercy, candy canes and cocoa by Chrystan Ferrell
The commercial Christmas season has infiltrated Christmas. It’s feeding you the lie that if you buy more, do more, and be more you will find the Christmas joy you crave. When really it’s just Jesus. Jesus is not just the reason for the season, he is the reason for it all. The hustle and bustle of the holidays can be a distraction to the true gift offered to us through the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. Immanuel means God with us and this twenty-five-day devotional will invite your heart to receive and apply the concept of God with us. This book will take you on a deeper journey into Jesus that just might turn that Christmas chaos into hope, peace, joy, and love. Come pursue Jesus this Christmas season!
All is Calm: A Christmas Devotional Celebrating Peace
DEVOTIONAL: All is Calm: A Christmas Devotional Celebrating Peace by Christine Wood
Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year! But the holiday season can be the most difficult time of the year for those who are stressed and overwhelmed. There are so many more balls to juggle! But the message of Christmas is good news for our anxious hearts. Jesus came so we could experience peace; peace that is stronger than anxiety, loneliness, stress, and conflict. Jesus brings us peace that overcomes our circumstances and secret fears.
These devotions celebrate the good news of Christmas with biblical insight and practical application for those who approach the holiday season with secret dread. Reflect on the truth of God’s word and celebrate His peace this Christmas.
The God Who Is With Us
DEVOTIONAL: The God Who is With Us by Ronnie Martin, Illustrated by Nathan Schroeder
The God Who Is With Us takes readers through a twenty-five-day Advent journey. Daily reflections on gospel truths drawn from Scripture will stir the imagination of the season while also reminding readers that God never abandons his people, but is present with them even in their most difficult seasons. Complete with beautiful, unique, thought-provoking illustrations and space for daily journaling and reflection, The God Who Is with Us provides readers with a meaningful keepsake to prepare them for the challenges of the New Year in light of the beauty of Advent.
This beautiful, contemplative book will be a staple for many individuals and families around Christmastime for years to come!
The Wonder of Christmas
BLOG POST SERIES: The Wonder of Christmas by Julie Lefebure
An 18-post series on the Wonder of Christmas highlights how to prepare our hearts for the birth of Jesus, by pulling out parts of the Christmas story from the Bible.
12 Names of Jesus
FREE EBOOK: 12 Names of Jesus Advent Devotionals for Weary Hearts by Marissa Bondurant
Christmas can be a difficult season when you are suffering. The Hallmark movie version of the season seems to be in sharp contrast to the pain of our current circumstances.
The true meaning of Christmas is that God chose to enter into the broken, messy, painful reality of our lives. The reason we celebrate Christmas is not to live out the Hallmark fairy tales, but to worship the God who came to rescue us.
Suffering reminds us of how desperate we are and creates in us a deeper longing to be rescued. For that reason, suffering during the holidays can be a sweet gift – helping us to more deeply appreciate the truth of God drawn near.
A Nativity Garland
PRODUCT: A Nativity Garland by Casey Hilty
Add this beloved heirloom-quality Nativity Garland to your holiday collection! Countdown to Christmas Day with this beautiful artist-created set featuring heartfelt hand-lettered scripture and gorgeous original artwork in distinctive Casey Hilty style. This new tradition will quickly become a family favorite as the story of Jesus’ birth unfolds throughout the holiday season this year and for years to come.
Use the provided string and clips to hang the cards (wreath-side out) on or before December 12th. Starting December 13th, turn one card over each day to reveal a new character, object, or place in the Nativity. Read the verses out loud and find them in the Bible to read more about Jesus’ birth. On Christmas Day, enjoy the entire panoramic of Bethlehem and the land beyond.
Simply Christmas Instrumental Hymns, Vol. 2
PLAYLIST: Simply Christmas Instrumental Hymns, Vol. 2 by Sarah Brooks
Instrumental Christmas Hymns album for those who would like some music to go along with their devotional reading.
CHILDREN’S BOOK: Mary’s Treasure by Greneaux Gardens
Immerse yourself in the life of Christ with this lovely, award-winning devotional set. Each day’s reading, written from Mary’s perspective, pairs exquisite poetry with stunning watercolor artwork on full-color 5×7 cards.
Coupled with personal devotions, curated scriptures, prayers, and questions for reflection, this set combines artistic beauty with practical application to inspire a fresh perspective on Jesus’ true significance.
Hope for a Silent Night After a Disappointing Day
Christmas: a time of year that is synonymous with joy, peace, and hope, but if we’re honest, can often be filled with sorrow, stress, and sleeplessness. With so much, seemingly, dependent upon us as we juggle busier-than-ever calendars, countless gatherings, the perfect menu, and multiple Christmas wish lists, no wonder it is so easy to become overwhelmed when disappointment sets in and plans and expectations fail to be met. Check out the accompanying free PDF booklet.
May these resources help you prepare him room,
P.S. Are you a Christian creative who has created a Christ-honoring Christmas or Advent resource you’d like to share? Feel free to add it in the comments below. Be sure to include a short paragraph (like the ones above) describing your resource, as well as an appropriate link. (Spam and unrelated and off-brand comments will be deleted.)
P.P.S. I’ve also created a coloring book to accompany the Every Longing Heart series. Download it for free for kids of all ages.