We are officially in the holiday season. Though there’s not much snow and festive weather in my corner of the country, it doesn’t change the fact that the holidays are upon us. Thanksgiving is in the past and Christmas looms large in my life’s windshield.
Hubs and I have completed most of our shopping. But there are parties to prepare for. Boys’ band concerts to attend. Activities to do so we can build memories with our quickly growing up boy-men. A house to decorate. Things to make. Gifts to wrap. Things to DO.
It’s too easy to focus on all the things I want to/need to do in the days leading up to Christmas. Some things may seem grand. Others may seem small.
But the question that’s pinging in my mind is, “What does Jesus want me to do?”
All the items on my list? They’re nice things to complete. Important, even.
But, during this season that can lead to too-much-busy, I sense Jesus wants me to be still before Him. To listen to Him.
Maybe he wants me—us—to see who we can be a gift to in our lives.
I can become so consumed with all my to-do’s that I miss opportunities to be a gift to the people around me. I miss the weary sigh. The subtle request for help. The discouraged expression that flits across a face and then is gone.
I don’t want to spend this Advent season so busy creating a “perfect Christmas” that I miss the gifts God wants me to give to others.
Whether it’s a clerk in a store who might need to hear a thank you, or someone who delivers something to our home who could use a smile. Whether it’s a friend who opens up about something that she’s struggling with. Or that person who recently had surgery but lives on the other side of town and could use a visit.
How can I be a gift to them? Maybe they just need someone to listen for a few minutes. Or a hug. Or maybe even a gift of a Christmas mocha (or tea).
The thing is, if I am going to be a gift to someone else, I need to have eyes and heart that are open and aligned with Jesus. Moments spent in stillness, quieting my heart before Jesus, enables me to hear His prompting throughout each day.
Do I want that perfect Christmas season for my family? Well, yes.
But even more, I want to be Jesus-with-skin-on to those around me. I want to be a gift to the people God allows to cross my path. Maybe the best way to live out these days is to first be intentional about yielding my time and heart to Jesus. Then I can be available to offer a gift to others.
What about you? How do you balance your holiday to-do list with being available to others? What is your favorite Christmas tradition?
Today I’m linking up with Holly Barrett’s Testimony Tuesday