Today my friend Stacey described one of our Advent calendars on her blog. The calendar was a going-away gift from our church family in Southern California when we moved to Charlotte. We love it — it’s a great coverage of redemption history to the birth of Christ. We were able to put quite a few more together with friends in Charlotte by splitting up the work involved.
Another Advent calendar that we’re enjoying for the second year in a row is related to the Jesus Storybook Bible, a favorite in our house. Quite simply, you begin on December 1st by reading the introduction (“The Story and The Song”), and proceed each day thereafter with one chapter. There are twenty-four chapters to bring you to the nativity stories in the book. Perfect timing!
On the 22nd, you’ll read this chapter, entitled “He’s Here!”
The JSS is explicit in its mission to teach children how all of Scripture speaks of Christ, so that the great culmination is Jesus’ arrival. It’s wonderful!
Now, some people think the Bible is a book of rules, telling you what you should and shouldn’t do. The Bible certainly does have some rules in it. They show you how life works best. But the Bible isn’t mainly about you and what you should be doing. It’s about God and what he has done.
Other people think the Bible is a book of heroes, showing you people you should copy. The Bible does have some heroes in it, but (as you’ll soon find out) most of the people in the Bible aren’t heroes at all. They make some big mistakes (sometimes on purpose), they get afraid and run away. At times, they’re downright mean.
No, the Bible isn’t a book of rules, or a book of heroes. The Bible is most of all a Story. It’s an adventure story about a young Hero who comes from a far country to win back his lost treasure. It’s a love story about a brave Prince who leaves his palace, his throne-everything-to rescues the ones he loves. It’s like the most wonderful of fairy tales that has come true in real life!
You see, the best thing about this Story is-it’s true.
There are lots of stories in the Bible, but all the stories are telling on Big Story. The Story of how God loves his children and comes to rescue them.
It takes the whole Bible to tell this Story. And at the center of the Story, there is a baby. Every story in the Bible whispers his name. He is like the missing piece in the puzzle-the piece that makes all the other pieces fit together, and suddenly you can see a beautiful picture.
-From the introduction