By Emelia Attridge

The feeling of Advent is like trying to fall asleep on Christmas Eve. Even as an adult, I still get excited and have trouble sleeping the night before Christmas. The season of Advent is like that—it is marked by anticipation, waiting, and longing for what is to come.

And yet, the month of December these days definitely does not feel like a season of waiting. It feels more like a season of packing the car, preparing dishes, attending parties, finding a Yankee Swap gift, sitting in traffic at the mall, and all the while finding time to maybe sit down and enjoy a cup of hot cocoa amidst the madness.

During our Preparing for Advent series in November, we learned about Lectio Divina, and how reading scripture, poetry, and even song lyrics could look different with this ancient practice of simply reading and listening for what jumps out at you in the moment.

Here are some spiritual practices for busy lives—for the Advent season and the rest of the year:

Listen to a podcast (my favorite is “On Being” with Krista Tippett)

Do something with your hands: knit or color

Create space: find that favorite armchair and sip a cup of cocoa

Go for a walk

Read a poem

Lay down and listen to music

These little moments of pausing are spiritual practices when we invite the Spirit in and when we remember that we are beloved. For those of us with busy lives, the moments we find to pause are the little moments of Sabbath that can keep us grounded.