The older I get, the faster the holidays seem to come. I hold on to summer as long as I can, but once the time changes, I have to pretty much let go.
Except for flip flips. I hope I never have to give up flip flops.
This year, I’m already looking at a full calendar. Do y’all realize we only have two weeks until Thanksgiving and six and a half weeks until Christmas? It seems as if the holidays just blur by in a frenzy of church and food and presents, and I hardly have time to savor it all.
Three Ways to Be Still This Holiday Season
As I sat on my back porch yesterday sipping coffee, I heard the Lord say, “Just be still.”
I have pondered that thought, and I want to share three ways I believe will help us be still and enjoy the season.
“Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him” (Psalm 37:4, NIV 84).
So many times during the holidays, I commit to activities I shouldn’t, I buy things I shouldn’t, and I create much of the chaos of the season myself. I am learning that I don’t have to participate in every event.
This year, I’m going to respond to offers with “I’ll let you know.” That way I can pray about it, talk to my husband about it, and not commit until I have waited on God to guide me. As a family, we can prayerfully decide which events to attend and which ones to gracefully decline.
I want to pray over my purchases, including things like food and decorations–expenses that I go overboard with every year. I want to be more intentional about gift-buying and planning only for what we need. Less stuff means less stress.
Instead of rushing through the holidays, making my own decisions about where to go and what to buy, I want to seek the Lord and allow Him to guide me so that I can stay in peace and in His will.
“Be still and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10).
I’m sure we’re all very familiar with this verse, but do we really put it into practice during the holidays? I’m usually running around frantically the last couple weeks of the holidays because it comes so quickly that I’m not prepared. By the time the holidays are over, I feel let down because I had so little time to focus on the Lord.
We have to know that He is God, and He is the One we are celebrating. We tend to make Thanksgiving and Christmas all about us and our family.
We prepare food because we enjoy eating the casseroles and pies that we don’t bake other times during the year. We think about how we can decorate our home so we can enjoy it. We buy gifts for those we love because it makes us happy to see them receive.
But how much time do we take to just know He is God?
What if we didn’t decorate the tree or bake the pies or purchase the gifts? Would we still be just as happy to give Him thanks and celebrate His birth?
I’m not saying any of those things are wrong, and I still plan to do them. My point is that I believe we will enjoy the season much more if we will focus on our knowing Who He is and why we are celebrating.
“He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, ‘Quiet! Be still!'” (Mark 4:39).
Sometimes our lives turn into a storm of hurricane proportions during the holidays. I think Jesus wants us to hear Him say, “Just be quiet. Be still. Seek quiet moments here with Me.”
One of the best ways to enjoy a peaceful season is to commit to spend quiet time with God every single day before you do anything else. I know it seems impossible for some of you because of work and other commitments, but I promise you won’t regret it.
Let’s be intentional this year to wait on God, to rest in the knowing of Who He is, and to spend quiet time in His presence.
Martha was busy making preparations; Mary sat at Jesus’ feet. Both got to experience the holy-day, but only one of them experienced the fullness of Jesus.