Saturday, December 6, 2008

Christmas Wishes

I have noticed that when I do not feel close to God, I do not feel good about myself. My self-esteem, which is never very high to begin with, seems to take a huge nose dive when I lose my focus on serving God. When I let myself get caught up in life and in distractions it is very easy to feel disappointed in myself. I guess part of it is the worldly view of who I should be, as a woman, but most of it is caused by simple self-centeredness. When I focus all my energy on myself, I ignore God. How can I possibly feel good about myself, when I am turning away from the One who gives my life meaning?
It is Advent, a beautiful time of preparation in our Church. Tim and I had talked about changing the focus this Advent and making the season more spiritual. We talked about all sorts of things we could do to put Jesus at the center of our Christmas celebrations. We had some great ideas. Unfortunately I feel as though my heart is not in it. We are doing a lot of stuff this Christmas but I’m not feeling closer to God through any of it. It is not only busyness that is clouding my spiritual vision, it is selfishness. I am putting my own desires before my prayer time, I am thinking too much about the things I want to do, and the way I want to do them. I am afraid when Tim and I had our talk about making Advent more holy, I missed the point a little. I think I figured it was all about me doing the right things in order to make this season holy. I left God out of the planning. Instead of trying to figure out how I can make Christmas a holy time of preparation, I need to simply turn to God. Instead of focusing on what we are doing to prepare, I need to focus on who we are preparing for! If I invite God to do His will in my life this season, and all seasons, each and every day will be more holy, more meaningful, more awe inspiring.
This Christmas, instead of planning more, I will try to pray more, to invite God to make His plans known, and to listen for His guidance. I will focus on trusting more and letting go of my ideas of what this season should be. I will allow this Christmas, instead, to be an opportunity to see all that God has in store for me and my family. For I know that Jesus is the reason for the sacredness and holiness of the season, not me.
May this Christmas be filled with God’s plans in your life and in mine. May your Advent be filled with preparations to receive whatever gifts and blessings He sends your way this year. May you and your families be abundantly blessed by God at Christmas and always.

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