During this season when Merry Christmas is on our lips…
And we are listening to Christmas carols that can be a balm to our weary souls…
Sometimes on the inside we are in turmoil.
We are burdened by our to do list.
And the joy can be lost in the daily tasks required of us to make ready for this blessed day.
I struggle with this yearly.
I have recognized that I have to make a conscious effort to say No to things.
I have to prepare for a long trip to see family. That means lists and planning so that we don’t forget Christmas gifts or blow-up mattresses or diapers or pajamas or blankets that the kiddos can’t sleep without…
And truthfully, at some point in all this preparation, there is a little voice that says- why can’t I just stay home? Why do I have to this year after year?
And I am reminded once again that gratitude is a choice- and many days in my life there is a battle being waged inside me. I can choose joy and thanksgiving- or I can grumble in my spirit and become bitter for the tasks required of me.
Many times those around me don’t see this battle, or maybe just those closest to me- but as I have drawn nearer to the Lord, I find myself more tender and in tune with my inner thought life and how it impacts my actions.
I want all parts of me to be pleasing to the LORD, even those parts that may remain hidden to others.
I want to work this year to find those golden nuggets of joy this season- to stop and savor and treasure them with all my heart.
And God brought to mind this passage, and as I fought for joy today over a mountain of laundry, hours of baking, and more hours of cleaning and packing as we prepare for Christmas travels.
Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
And I hope and pray for you and me…
For your family and my family….
For friends and neighbors…
That this year we might dwell in Christ this Christmas season.
And may the peace of Christ rule in our hearts- and invite others to draw near and know Him- our precious Savior and Lord.