Just last week, I remarked how much I was looking forward to a peaceful, restful Christmas season following the celebration of Thanksgiving last Thursday. However, since then, I have had an unbelievably hectic calendar. Normally, Janet and I wait until after Thanksgiving to start putting up the Christmas decorations, but as we get a little older, we have decided the last several years to start slightly ahead of our normal timetable.
In fact, I started pulling out the “village” and some of the other stuff while Janet was in Williamsburg on her “sisters” trip several weeks ago. When she returned home, we were able to complete the lower level decorations before Thanksgiving.
Of course, we took Thanksgiving off but that day was consumed with making the dressing, cooking a 26# turkey and then transporting it to our daughter’s home where we enjoyed dinner together. It is true that we avoided all the traditional mess, with the exception of the turkey prep, and that was a blessing, but it also cleared the decks for us to get up and start working on the rest of the house decorations first thing Friday.
It’s a good thing that we don’t do any of the Black Friday shopping – we miss all that because we are so busy putting stuff up! Now I have thought from time to time that maybe we should bag all the mess and just put up one tree and call it a day. But Janet loves decorating for the advent season and we enjoy it so much once the heavy lifting is over and everything is up and finished.
I guess I should mention that neither Janet nor I have purchased any of our gifts for others. Thank goodness for the internet – I think we will buy more online this year than we ever have in the past. Oh- then one of the fixtures on the side of the garage shorted out and I am busy looking for someone who can rewire it within several weeks at the latest. I have several consulting assignments on the horizon and that will further impact my available time to engage in seasonal celebratory activities.
We generally try to get away for a few days in January, but we have even been too tied up to investigate that option as well. And the list goes on and on – much more than I can even relay in this post. So what are we to do as we dream about peace, joy, time and space to ponder the awesome nature of God? For starters, we must pray.
When people get busy, one of the first things they stop is prayer. And that’s the reverse of what we should be doing. Prayer is one of the things that is so important that no matter how busy we are, prayer is a necessity and should never be forgotten or abandoned. Our verse for tonight is about God’s invitation to share our burdens and take on part of the load. We are told, in Matthew 11:29-30, “Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
In other words, take it down a notch and trust God to manage your load. He is capable of handling far more than any of us ever could and that should be an encouragement to us. My prayer is that you will allow some margin in your life this Christmas season and allow God to speak into the hectic elements of your life to provide you the peace and joy that all of us long for as we celebrate the birth of Jesus about a month from now. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…