When the wait is over. The book is here.

I got the email just after chapel on Sunday morning.: “Congratulations, your paperback, Giving a Year Meaning: A Healing Journal for Advent 2020, is available to buy on Amazon.”

I smiled and cried and showed the email to Nancy. I had been afraid that somehow this journal wasn’t going to happen.

I talked a couple weeks ago about helping us think about whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. I realized Sunday evening as I was walking, thinking about how to talk with you about this journal, that it’s an attempt to help you and me draw those things out of this year.

In this journal, every day from November 29 through December 31, I’m inviting you to think about something from the year. What did you miss celebrating with someone that you want to go back to? What gives hope to the people on your Christmas list? What dreams disappeared?

Those thoughts are sometimes unapologetically hard. But over the course of the month, they are also healing. They help us metabolize the uncertainty of the year.

Make no mistake. This isn’t a devotional, with a nice story that will make you feel warm for Christmas. (I’ve got a couple of those already.) But if we spend the time remembering, we may recover some anticipation.

I’d love you to buy a copy of the paperback to make notes, to write responses, to have a tangible guide alongside your morning coffee (even if you don’t write in it.) I’d love you to have a couple copies to share with friends or family.

(I had this thought a couple weeks ago of how cool it would be if the people I interact with every day had all read the prompt to offer a personal treasure to someone, and did it! We’d all be smiling all day long.)

  • If you want to look at a sample, go to 2020advent.com.
  • If you want to buy your own copy, go to Giving a Year Meaning: A Healing Journal for Advent 2020.
  • If you buy it and are worried it won’t arrive in time to get started on November 29, email me your receipt and I’ll send you the PDF.
  • If you know a church or group that needs to do this, tell them for me.
  • If you have bought it already, please leave a review.

You and I both know this feels more salesy than I like to be. But I think that I can help us over the next couple months. And as one of the people who looked at a draft said to me, “It seems the challenges of 2020 are unlike any other, and so it seems that a generic tool just doesn’t feel like it would do justice. So, I think this tool, specific for the year 2020, is such a gift!”

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