Have you ever considered approaching Advent like Lent?
It seems like an odd suggestion, seeing as this is a season of hope -- but consider it for a moment.
In Advent, we prepare our hearts for the coming of the Infant Jesus. Let's face it, in the hustle and bustle of this time of year we don't make a lot of time for Him. But what if we made an effort to give something up for Advent? Like chocolate. Or limiting our time on our favourite social networking site? To fill those voids, perhaps we could meditate on Scripture, or take the money we save and donate it to a charity. Or maybe we would have more time to say a Rosary, if we don't do so already, or commit ourselves to spending an hour in Adoration once a week, for the next four weeks. Or perhaps we could take some time to make a thorough examination of conscience identifying some of what clutters up our heart, and go to Confession, flushing it out!
Being the season of hope, we should also foster hope. Try this little activity: every night before going to bed, thank God for 10 things. It could be something as simple as getting a seat on the bus or receiving a compliment. We could thank God for the food we eat, for shelter, for friends, for family. There's so many things! But just take 10 things to be thankful for, every night.
I guarantee you will begin to see more clearly God acting in your life, and you will have a greater trust and hope in Him.
There’s so many little things that we can do this Advent to make a little more room to lay the Child Jesus in our hearts at Christmas, we just have to make that effort.