Advent

It’s not a question of whether you find Christmas enjoyable or frantic or irrelevant or sentimental.  The question is: do you experience Christmas as a spiritual time- From the introduction to THIN PLACES, an Urban Skye Advent Guide

For those who hope to connect to the Spirit of Christmas beyond its nostalgia, Urban Skye has created Advent Guides.  Each of our three guides invites the reader to enter the story of the Nativity through a unique theme for the four weeks of Advent.

We begin with an introduction to Advent followed by our theme. Each week highlights a character from the story, a short reading followed by a variety of responses from reflective questions to small group/family activities.  The guides can be done personally or practiced in community your family, small group or congregation.  In fact, we have just reworked all three of our guides to make them more group and family friendly

Like all we do through Urban Skye, the guides are not designed just for the “churched”. Though the design, the writing and the suggested responses, all of our Advent Guides speak to any who want more from the season. If you are part of a faith community, we hope that you would consider offering a guide to your friends and neighbors.  Better, we would encourage you to practice Advent alongside them!

Dave Meserve, Urban Skye Publishing

Tuesday
Oct152013

Our Advent Guides - On Sale Now

The Door - customizable Advent guide

One of the historic themes of the Nativity story is to "make Him room".  In this Advent guide we take that challenge quite seriously!  We create four "doors" that make space for Christ and for each other during this busy time of the year.  Each devotional reading is followed by a weekly prayer, quotes from C. S. Lewis and two activities to try: one for all and one especially for children.

*SPECIAL ORDERS ONLY - 100 ORDER MINIMUM. A unique feature of this guide is a blank first page that can be personalized for a church or family.  Contact dave@urbanskye.org

Van Gogh

Magi, Shepherds, Simeon/Anna, Mary

The theme is “God outside the camp,” but the Van Gogh cover is so engaging that we refer to it as the Van Gogh Guide.  In it, you’ll meet four misfits and outcasts from the Nativity story who show that God’s channels of grace are always surprising.   Van Gogh’s art and life introduces the theme followed by four other misfits for you to read about and consider.  We offer three kinds of responses each week around our Urban Skye triad: pursue beauty, share burdens, learn grace.  Our Van Gogh Guide is our only guide that supplies blank pages for journaling.  Here is a sample of our Van Gogh guide. 

 The Third Way 

Herod, Angels, Innkeeper, Jesus

In contrast to our more natural “fight or flight” response to life, Jesus modeled a different way to live that neither returns violence for violence nor runs from the fight. We borrow the language of The Third Way and trace its origin through the Nativity Story.  How and why Jesus came into the world – the Incarnation – is our life-lesson in this guide.  Each week unfolds the theme through a character in the story and offers a reflection question for individuals or groups, an active response, and we suggest further readings.  We also highlight a provocative quote and one of Jesus’ beatitudes.  Here is a sample of our Third Way guide. 

Thin Places  

Mary/Elizabeth, Zechariah, Shepherds, Simeon 

The Celtic Saints of old understood that the distance between heaven and earth was often “thin” in certain, sacred places.  God was so close you could feel The Presence!  We discovered four such thin places in the four exclamations, or poems, of the Nativity story. Each week we tell the story and then relate it to a particular Celtic practice we call The Celtic Way.  Then we offer a Celtic prayer and two or three ways to cultivate your own thin place.   Kid’s will not only enjoy this guide but have a lot to offer the adults in how to connect with the God of Thin Places!  Here is a sample of our Thin Places guide. 

Primary Colors 

The Transcendence of Advent. TRANSCENDENCE  means “beyond the normal limits” and the Nativity is full of things far beyond normal.  Three transcendent virtues capture us as they have captured wisdom writers throughout the ages: TRUTH, GOODNESS and BEAUTY. They are like God’s “primary colors” for creating life, all used on a palette of GRACE.  In our latest Advent Guide, we will look at the origins and intentions of this Triad of Transcendence as seen in the Nativity.  The guided response each week connects us with The Story as well as our own and we provide a fun reflection on color to match our most colorful guide. You’ll also enjoy our first CHRISTMAS EVE devotion. Here is a sample of our Primary Colors guide.  

Orders 

Purchase our Advent Guides via Paypal.  The guides cost $4.00, plus shipping for orders under 50.  

Orders of over 50

For orders for a church or organization of over 50, all of the above guides are $3.00 per guide.  

Advent Guides - small orders

If you are in the Denver area, we can arrange for local pick-up.  Contact Dave at his email dave@urbanskye.org

Include name, mailing address, phone, email, how many and which guides.