"It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!" But this year, it sure doesn't look or feel like Christmas time! The weather is nice, the ground isn't frozen and there's not a snowflake in sight! But Christmas is coming up fast. I see lights on many houses, toys in every store and lit up Christmas trees in many homes.
Far too often, I find the Christmas season to be an extremely busy one. So much to do and so little time to do it in. It's far too easy to get caught in the busyness and commercialism of the season that I forget the magic of this season, the wonder of the nativity and the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Juliana Gordon shares this: "Am I pursuing this "magical" feeling over all other things?
Being able to articulate this has been a light bulb moment for me. I see how I have been pursuing an elusive, "magical" Christmas that does not account for so many other factors. My disappointment in how the season turns out does not help me have a godly attitude. No, I end the season sad and a little bitter. I tend to be a "Martha" in the Martha and Mary story (Luke 10:38-42), and Christmas amplifies that fact.
My heart's cry today is that I would reflect Jesus in my attitude and actions, no matter what season it is. I pray as my to-do list grows that I would be wise about what I keep on the list. I pray as this busy season continues that I will be able to say "no" to events that skew my priorities for the holidays. I pray that I will cheerfully give and receive, and I pray that I will recognize and be thankful for the special moments that come up this holiday season. I plan on reading the book of Luke to remind me of Jesus' life here on earth and His ultimate sacrifice for me.
What do you want to change about this Christmas season in order to reflect your heart for Christ more accurately?"
I want to slow down and savor time spent reading the Advent devotional with my family as we light the Advent wreath. I want to spend more quiet time in prayer with my Lord, thanking Him for who He is and lifting up to Him many in need of prayer..I want to refrain from trying to make the season "perfect" in looks, gifts and events, and aim for "perfect" time with Jesus and family and friends..I want to grow in gratitude for all I have - I am a beloved child of God, blessed with a wonderful family, a loving church family, close friends, and so many other things.
What about you - what do you want to change about this Christmas season in order to reflect your heart for Christ more accurately?
Everyone at the Pedersen house would like to wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas season!
Pastor Caryn, Ed, Abby, Osiel, Tony & Neyali