Christmas 2023: Celebrating Advent

The Advent Season is one of our family’s most treasured times of year. So many traditions, some rich and meaningful, others lighthearted and fun, mark these weeks of celebration, all leading up to the day we celebrate our Savior’s birth. This year, we wanted to share a tradition that has helped us keep the focus on Christ as we trace The Story leading up to His birth.

In our early days of parenting (days too early for Pinterest or social media), we floundered about a bit in our navigation of the holidays. We wanted traditions that would bring our little family together. We wanted traditions that would bring value and meaning to the season. We wanted traditions that our children could be actively involved in. Enter Tom and Jeannie Murray. Tom, as the founder of Truth Seekers Fellowship, became Stacy’s employer in the year 2000. But he also became Stacy’s mentor.

There were so many nuggets of godly and practical wisdom that Stacy gleaned from Tom in the relatively short time they served together. And both Tom and his wife Jeannie became the source of many wonderful traditions that we began with our own children. One such was with the Christmas Advent Candles. The Murrays didn’t use the standard pink and purple candles, but colors representative of “His Story” in Scriptures – from the Garden of Eden and the first sin, through the promises of a Messiah given to Israel, to the coming of the Savior and an eternal Kingdom that would follow.

Our version of the Advent Candles has evolved over time, and is slightly different from its original “Murray Version.” But it has been, to this day, a source of meaning and significance to the season in our household. In the busy-ness of each December, our “Advent Evenings” become a sacred time together, to slow down, to worship as a family – to remember the promises, the hope, the joy we have been given by the One who came to earth two millennia ago. And that is the beauty of a family tradition – carving out space and creating time for your family to create those deeply meaningful memories… together.

The foundation of our “Advent Evenings” together centers on the use of five different colored candles and what they represent:

The Green Candle – “God’s Glorious Creation”

The Black Candle – “Sin Enters the World”

The Blue Candle – “The Promises of a Future King”

The Gold Candle – “The King Is Born!”

The White Candle – “The Coming Kingdom”

These are placed in our advent wreath, with the white candle in the middle. Throughout the twenty-five days leading up to Christmas morning, our family lights each successive candle as we make our way through Scripture to the culmination of Christ’s birth. Our children, when they were younger, would love to take turns lighting the candles, telling us what they represented, and then blowing them out at the end of our devotional time. It was a wonderful way to get them involved. Our Advent Evenings always conclude with a few Christmas carols. There is nothing like singing “Go Tell It On the Mountain” at the top of your lungs together to make it truly feel like the Christmas season! (Our family LOVES to make a “joyful noise!”)

This year, we wanted to share this out-of-the-box tradition with you. Each day in December, we will provide a Scripture passage to read and short devotional. All you need to add are the candles and candle holders. (We’ve had success finding these candles on Amazon and at Hobby Lobby, but any craft store will do!) You can use an advent wreath, with green, black, blue, and gold taper candles, and a white pillar candle in the middle. You can use five different candle holders placed in the order that they’ll be lit. Or you can buy jarred candles in the appropriate colors. Whatever works best for you. Then come to our blog FOLLOW each day, from December 1-25, to read the next segment of our Advent Celebration. We hope it blesses your family as much as it has blessed ours.

May You Have a Blessed Advent Season!
Jill and Stacy Tyson


  1. Molly Adams on 2022-11-30 at 2:23 PM

    Thanks! I will look forward to each day’s devotional. Jill, we had to be VERY creative to get those nativity sets back with us on the plane to Denver. Actually ended up putting them in a liquor box with partitions in it, taping it up and sending it on Southwest with us a LUGGAGE! Only John had to wait about twenty minutes at a different location to pick up this box, and they had originally sent him to the wrong location!

  2. Judye Shannon on 2022-11-30 at 9:04 PM

    Looking forward to reading everyday! I told Jeannie that she needed to read the kind words that you said about her and Tom!

  3. Simon on 2023-12-03 at 9:15 PM

    Great family and skilled program.

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