I was looking back at my 12DoC posts from 2018, and… I can relate so much to a post I shared then… so I am resharing it. The following post is what I wrote in 2018. ♥
Christmas is a busy time. Stressful. Painful. This year, for my family, it’s been one tough year and things are very chaotic. More so than the usual holiday busyness. To be honest, I’ve had trouble getting in the normal Christmas spirit. I lack time to watch many movies, but I make up for it by blaring For King And Country Christmas music so I can worship God. I lack time to read a lot of fiction, but I focus on reading my Bible and writing my own things. I’ve had to learn how to stay focused on what matters because I don’t have time for everything.
Rejoice in the Lord always: again I say, Rejoice. – Philippians 4:4
Christmas is a time for remembering Jesus’ birth. It is a time to worship. Celebrate. But what we easily forget is that God doesn’t expect us to have everything together. He doesn’t want perfection. He wants us to find joy in HIM. We cannot find joy in gifts. You’ve heard that before. But let’s take a step deeper. Think you’ll have a nicer holiday if that one relative wasn’t so overbearing? Would Christmas be more joyful if it were less loud? Would you be happier if you didn’t have to work so hard to keep up with things? Here’s the answer, folks: no. We cannot find peace or joy in anything but Jesus.
How do we find Jesus in chaos?
Before you wake up to tackle the to-do list, thank God for waking you up.
When your nieces are losing their cool, try to breathe and thank God for your family.
When you put another gift under the sparkling tree, thank the Lord for the Greatest Gift.
When you’re listening to Christmas carols, sing along and praise God.
When you are doing chores, pray for someone.
Above all… REJOICE. No matter what you face, God is there and we can find peace in HIM!
But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them: let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee. – Psalms 5:11
God is not limited to our to-do lists and expectations. We have to choose to trust Him, even when our stress is high and we want to have a break down. God is in control. He loves us. He gave His son for our sins so we could choose everlasting life. Rejoice in that Love… Because it is enough to not only keep us going, but Jesus’ Love helps us rejoice in the storm. And Jesus’ love is something to celebrate.
Wow. 2019 now and I still relate to this post. Why? Because we were in the midst of moving then–and we’re moving again now (building a house, then moving in, I should say). It’s been hard to find a lot of “Christmas spirit” this year, also, because of my mom being sick since November because the hemp farm in the neighborhood refuses to stop burning 40+ acres of woods. If anything, this winter has been many blows of “ha! people are no good!” Which isn’t true. There are good people, kind people, people who love me. People who love you. Sure, there are some bad eggs. But this is the perfect time of year to really hand everything to God… and choose to rejoice.
My mom hasn’t been able to leave the house to do much Christmas shopping at all. But I can rejoice in the small moments of us making cookies, gift shopping online, and talking about Hallmark movies.
My dad has been super busy working and trying to get our house done. But I can rejoice in the time we get to work together, tease each other, and talking.
My siblings are busy, and we don’t always know what the “perfect gift” is (*cough* me, I’m the one who doesn’t know what to get anyone), but we always have each others’ backs. We can always talk to each other and be real with one another.
My nieces are often loud and tiring and like to try jabbing my eyes out (Gabby has an obsession with glasses?)… but they’re sweet, funny, and my little army of blue-eyed children. ;P
All in all, sure, there are things to be upset over. There are family members and friends to miss and mourn. But we can choose to rejoice in every moment… not because we even have a whole long list of blessings, but because Jesus gave us the ultimate Gift. His blood is enough for any worry, fear, or pain we want to bear… we can give it to Him and be washed clean. That is the ultimate thing to rejoice over–Jesus’ love.
I encourage y’all, whether you’re in jolly spirits or you’re in a place of mourning, to take a minute every day to truly think of what God has done for us each.
Two winners will receive: a paperback copy of Behold (by yours truly), a pair of fuzzy Christmas socks, a Christmas ornament, and a few other small goodies (magnet, candy, something like that).
Check out Faith’s blog for the rest of the bloggers’ posts!