God danced among the common and that night…he did a waltz. Max Lucado
Happy Christmas Eve! So how was your Advent? I hope you were able to make a little room in your heart and get ready for the wee Baby Jesus! What, you didn’t have an hour of uninterrupted silent prayer each day? What do you mean, you felt frazzled and stressed instead of calm and prayerful? Are you kidding, you don’t really feel all that much different than you did the first Sunday of Advent?
Welcome to the club! Believe me, I get it! How many times did your kids get the flu or did auto or home repair bills catch you by surprise? How many Christmas programs did you squeeze in between working late, eating too much sugar and going to 45 school events since Advent began? Isn’t it funny how we begin Advent with such high hopes to be calm and enjoy and wait and prepare but we end up rattled, exhausted, low on money and wishing Advent came AFTER Christmas when we had more time to focus on it! The good news is; we still have a few hours! Think of this post as an Advent Sprint Finish how-to!
First of all, I’d be willing to bet that your Advent had more shining moments that you realize. Take a few minutes of still and quiet today and reflect back on the last three weeks. Did you pray a little more? Were you a little more mindful of the needs of others? Did you do something to take care of the struggling, the hungry or the needy during Advent? Maybe you read or listened to something good for your soul or payed a little more attention to the homily or the Scripture Readings. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you call to mind the little ways you opened your heart to prepare. You may not string it all together but he certainly does.
Just because Advent is a whole season, it’s still just a window of time made up of smaller moments. Loving the Lord and growing in Discipleship isn’t all or nothing! It’s about chunks of times when we take little steps forward. My tall sons can get across a room faster than I can with their long legs but it doesn’t mean their trip is better, it just means they traveled a little differently than me. Don’t let Advent guilt skulk into your heart today…its’ Christmas Eve and a miracle is about to take place. It’s the eve of the night of Wonder and Awe! It’s the night we celebrate the beginning of God’s humanity. It’s the night that we remember how powerfully God showed his love for us. He reached down and put his son in the arms of a teenage girl so we could join him in heaven as saints! There is no room for guilt or worry or feelings of unworthiness today! We’ve got a party to get ready for!
Company comes often and sometimes I’m ready for them. Sometimes I have plenty of time to prepare and put flowers and homemade goodies on my guests bed side table. Those are the times everything is scrubbed and shiny and all the favorite foods are prepared. Other times, I have from the time a guest pulls into the driveway and makes it to the front door to get ready. Either way, I love having guests and the quality of my preparation has very little to do with the beauty of the visit. You may have had a great Advent getting ready or you may be doing “Newborn King Prep” at warped speed today but either way, Jesus is coming and he’s gonna be awesome regardless of what we’ve done. At this point, the most important task is all that remains….OPEN THE DOOR OF YOUR HEART AND LET HIM IN!
Merry Christmas My Friends!
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