The Lord says, “I was ready to respond, but no one asked for help. I was ready to be found, but no one was looking for me.” Psalm 65:1 NLT
Why is it that Thanksgiving seems to be the first day of Christmas? My husband is Canadian, so many years ago we chose to celebrate Thanksgiving with the Canadians, on the first Sunday of October. That may seem crazy, but it leaves us free to enter into the holidays with less stress and bother, and more able to focus on what really matters.
After all, the challenge of this wonderful time of year is to stay focused on what really matters. What really matters to you? As a woman and a mother, it can seem like everyone is depending on you to “make” the holidays, Thanksgiving and Christmas, happy and wonderful for everyone else. Have you fallen into that trap?
What and who “makes” the holidays amazing is our wonderful Father God. He is the One we are to thank for our blessings. He is the One who sent our Lord Jesus, to become one of us, to rescue us from death and darkness and restore our relationship with him. God cares about our families and friends, and wants us to enjoy them, but we cannot appreciate them and love them as we should, without, first, stopping to love God and thank him for all he is and for all he has done. This is a time God has given us to draw closer to him, not just your family and friends. He wants to give you a fresh revelation, a new insight into who he is, that will strengthen you in the years ahead.
So, here is the challenge. What will you commit to do and NOT do this year to honor and please God first, so that you are aligned with his plans for the holidays and can be positioned to be filled with his love and joy, so that you can pour it out on those around you? Remember we love others with God’s love and his joy is the strength we will need to give us the patience and endurance we will need to make it through to January in his peace.
Further on in Psalm 65, after telling his people they are ignoring him (above), God says that those who ignore him “will starve”, but his faithful seekers, his servants, “will eat”. Will you choose to starve spiritually this year, or be fed richly and abundantly from the Father’s storehouse of blessings?
Pray with me: “Father God, forgive me for letting the rush and craziness of the holiday season steal my time, passion and focus from you. Holy Spirit, strengthen me to resist the temptations of this world. Convict me when I begin to wander from my focus on God. I want to please and glorify him in all I do. In Jesus’ precious name. Amen.”
Dear friend, be blessed as you release the expectations of others and seek only to please God for Christmas. May you feel his delight and be filled with his joy as you seek and find him in the details of your days ahead. May your roots sink deep into his heart and keep you committed and strong. Amen.
November 16, 2018