I saw a similar idea to this on Facebook, did a little more research and brainstorming, then decided that I wanted to share this fabulous Reverse Advent idea with you! Join this fun!! Instead of a regular count-down-to-Christmas calendar, consider serving with your family like this during the holiday season…
What is Reverse Advent?
Instead of eating a piece of chocolate or opening a small gift as you count down to Christmas, the idea of Reverse Advent lends itself to giving. Instead of receiving something each day as Christmas gets closer, or even simply counting down the days, we’ll reverse the idea and choose something to give to someone!
Here are some Reverse Advent examples I saw online as I was researching:
- Add a non-perishable food item into a box every day leading to Christmas. On Christmas Eve, deliver the food box to someone in need or to a local mission or food pantry.
- Follow the same idea as above, only add a toiletry item such as toothpaste, toothbrush, comb, socks, feminine hygiene products, toilet paper, etc to your box.
- Choose an Act of Kindness to do as a family each day leading up to Christmas.
I brainstormed more ideas:
- Follow the same idea as above, only add a baby item to the box to give to an expectant mama.
- Add a children’s book, coloring book, crayons, and small toys each day and deliver it to a family with young children on Christmas Eve.
- Pray for someone new each day…
The sky’s the limit, and I have no doubt that if you and your family pray about this Reverse Advent idea, He will lead you to give and to serve in just the right way leading up to Christmas.
Here’s a sample of one list we came up with if you’d like to spend December 1-24 filling a box with food for a food bank or for friends:
I made a complete packet of all kinds of Reverse Advent list ideas here. (It’s free!)
Our Family’s Reverse Advent Project
We decided that this year our family’s Reverse Advent project will be to fill a box with baking supplies for a family we know. They LOVE to bake, but struggle to afford even basic groceries. So we’re going to put together a box of baking supplies so they can bake their hearts out this Christmas season. (So actually, we’re going to give them their box a few days before Christmas instead of delivering it Dec. 24!)
I made a complete list of 24 items to include in a Baking Box here.
Your Reverse Advent project might cost money or it might cost time. Maybe a little of both. But what a great way to make Jesus a part of your Christmas season!
Don’t have extra money for a Reverse Advent project?
Let your Reverse Advent project focus on prayer for 24 people or families as you countdown the days until Christmas. (I’ve got a great list for you here, plus another page so you can make your own prayer list!) No matter what you choose, if God is in it, He will bless it!
Besides the Baking Box we’re putting together for our Reverse Advent Project, my family and I plan to make a Paper Chain with 24 strips of paper. We’ll write the name of someone we want to pray for on each strip, put the strips into a chain, then pull one off each day as we count down to Christmas, praying each day for the person on the paper!
I also really like the idea of stringing up 24 paper hearts with people’s names so we can count down and pray this way.
Make it a family project…
If you do choose to purchase 24 items for a Reverse Advent box, make a list as a family, go shopping as a family, put all 24 items in a pile, and begin adding them to a special box on December 1. As Christmas draws near, watch the pile get smaller as the box fills up! Pray over the recipients, pray for generous hearts for your own family, pray for God’s work to be done and for His light to shine brightly through this.
Want some ideas and ready-made lists to guide you along as you plan a Family Reverse Advent Project? We worked hard and HAD FUN making a packet full of ideas and lists for you. Sign up below and we’ll send you this completely FREE printable packet! (It includes 10 pages and is so helpful to have!)
Download your packet, then spend time praying as a family as you decide how to serve this Christmas season. You’ll want to begin your Reverse Advent Project on December 1, so start getting ready right away!
Please comment here so we can all share in encouraging each other. What has your family chosen for your Reverse Advent Project?