Tales of Christmas Past

Paper sculpture of Mary and Joseph holding the infant Jesus
Illustration by Gail Armstrong

"It's the most wonderful time of the year!" So goes the line to the classic holiday song. But do those words describe how your life really looks at Christmastime? Perhaps you're more inclined to believe that the old song about having a Blue Christmas fits the season better.

As Christians, we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, but life in a fallen world doesn't take a yuletide timeout. Indeed, for many, the season of Advent is marked not by good cheer, but by sorrow and dissatisfaction. For our "Tales of Christmas Past" Advent calendar, we recognize that the Christmas season doesn't always live up to our lofty ideals.

We've collected a number of true stories of Christmastime that point to the central, eternal theme of Christmas: Into this darkness has come a great light. 

As you read these stories as a family, you'll see that there's something about Christmastime that really does make it special. Unexpected acts of honesty and generosity display the "Christmas spirit." Kindness and warmth toward strangers are evidence of "Christmas cheer." It may not be the most wonderful time of year, but when people reflect goodness and God's love to others, it's can be pretty great.

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Once you sign in, you will first find our most recent Advent calendar. Scroll down the page until you find the three free downloads that make up the "Tales of Christmas Past" Advent calendar.

Portions of this Advent calendar first appeared in the December 2014/January 2015 issue of Thriving Family magazine. If you enjoyed this Advent calendar, find more family faith activities and articles in Focus on the Family’s marriage and parenting magazine. Get it delivered to your home by subscribing for a gift of any amount.
Updated 2018. Copyright © 2016 by Focus on the Family

Next in this Series: A Traditional Advent Calendar

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