Tomorrow is Christmas Eve. For the past month, practically everyone that I know has been going non-stop stressing out about, what? PRESENTS! What else?
Somehow that is always one of the first thoughts in my mind when Christmas is near. It’s an old habit that I tend to fall back on. The presents and the baking are the big “events” surrounding our family through the month of December. This year the panic about getting it all done in time has been an even bigger panic because somehow my entire family managed to lose track of time and as of about two days ago, we all thought that we had an additional week to “prepare” for the holiday. Boy were we in for a shock.
This past weekend has been one that has been packed with messes, buying, wrapping, baking and most importantly…family.
I have spent some beautiful time with my family. My husband of course has been working, but I’ve had time to enjoy my first family; my parents and my sister, and now in that group is my daughter.
This year my daughter is three years old and it is the first year that she had really been able to participate with the preparation part of the season. She has had a blast shopping, picking out ornaments, decorating trees, baking and icing cookies−and even unwrapping some gifts that were waiting to be sent out to other family members.
Her ability to be more involved this year has been such a blessing to me. It has been such a huge help to take my focus off of the material things surrounding Christmas and to turn it toward thankfulness for everything that I have. Thankful to the One who has blessed me so greatly. The One to whom my focus should have been on the entire time in the first place.
“Jesus is the reason for the season.” It’s almost become a cliché. In past years, I have quoted this over and over and tried to take its meaning at face value. Much like anything else, it’s hard to force understanding. I’ve always known what it meant, but this year is the first year that I really feel it. Those words just aren’t even enough to describe this feeling. The feeling of knowing the truth of God and Jesus, and everything that the Bible tells us. It’s just amazing.
I hope that the Savior has been in the front of your mind in the midst of all of the glitz and distractions that come along with the Christmas season. He has blessed us all in so many ways that we are probably still unable to recognize no mater how hard we’re looking. Remember as you’re celebrating and spending time with family and loved ones that there is another present among you. Remember when the festivities are over, that there is always Someone who you need to thank for everything. By “everything” I don’t mean just the gifts that you’ve unwrapped, or the candies you’ve dieted all year to splurge on now, but for the life you live and the love that is all around us.
Not having the ideal holiday? Remember that good can come from bad situations. God works everything for the good of those who love Him (Romans 8:28), even if we can’t always see it.