Christmas Presence

Are you ready for Christmas?

The golden question I have been asked so frequently the past week. As of today, not all the presents are home, the live tree is still standing in a random field, no wrapping has occurred, and baking, well about tomorrow I will begin a Betty Crocker day!

But I have told people I am ready. I am ready to worship Jesus. I am ready to focus on the Greatest Love Story ever: God looking at His creation and authoring a way for His sinful children to return back into His presence.

I am ready to let go of this crazy schedule and ridiculous expectations and allow myself to sit in silent wonder of just how much God loves each one of us. How He treasures us. How He wants to spend time with us.

He doesn’t want us to stress about His Son’s birthday. He wants us to be joy-filled and celebratory. He wants us to be able to treasure the time off and spend it with those we love; not schedule commitments out of obligation.

Are you ready for Christmas? Are you ready to worship the Creator of everything? Are you ready to enjoy this wonderful time of year and let its true meaning wash over you and fortify your soul?

I pray that in the midst of the chaos you will chisel out many quiet, beautiful moments to sit before a lit candle and read His love story. You will read His great love for all humanity, and for you personally. Maybe, you will even experience a Mary moment and “treasure up all these things” in your heart.

Let your heart listen to His quiet words whispered through the pages and allow your mind to fix on the true meaning of Christmas.

 

Merry Christmas!

In Need of a Silent Night

Final exams.

Dinner to make.

Children to bathe.

Dog chewed the steak.

Laundry to fold.

Papers to grade.

Lord why did I think I could do all this today?

Floor is filthy.

Classroom’s a mess.

Lab exploded.

Broken glass creates a mess.

Christmas d├ęcor blew away.

My Olaf popped on a thorn in the fray.

The last child tucked in; dog collapsed by the fire;

I knew I better sit down or retire.

My heart’s heavy, my mind just wouldn’t quit.

It was then I realized I needed way more than St. Nick.

I needed peace.

I needed slumber.

I needed quiet, unencumbered.

I needed more warm moments.

I needed less cold thoughts.

I simply needed something that just couldn’t be bought.

This time of year it’s easy to become overwhelmed. But somehow, I don’t think Jesus would desire for us to feel frantic celebrating the birth of the Prince of Peace.

Jesus came to give us life and give it abundantly.

Today.

Everyday.

It’s we who overfill the moments.

It’s we who try to create grandiose nostalgia when the most meaningful memory would be the moment of comprehension of our greatest gift.

God has blessed us with the gifts of life on earth, and of eternal life through His Son.

God is blessing us with the gift of time of today. He lets us choose how we will spend todays’ hours and minutes. What will we choose?

Although they are pretty, the packages do not contain the gift of happiness.

Although they may fill (and overfill!) our stomachs, the delicious traditions of our family feasts will not quench our heart’s desires to know and be known by our Creator.

Although the parties and festivities are fun-filled social events we don’t want to miss, they could never take the place of that one deep relationship Jesus desires to have with each of us.

Maybe you’re like me and must force yourself to just sit and be still. Even if it’s late, I hope you can take the time to truly rest in a dimly lit room, enjoying the unencumbered, unimaginable joy of Christmas as God intended: a sincere celebration of His great love for each of us.

I pray this holiday season we can each and all discover the true joy of Christmas.