Christmas season is a busy time. I was looking at the calendar yesterday and feeling the panic rising up in my mind. So much to do! I’m worried that I will forget to do something. The season becomes stressful and we wish we had more time.
The business of our life leaves little room for the source of our life. God gives us time, but who has time for God? Here are some thoughts to help you manage the feelings of stress and business during the holidays. I hope they help you to slow down and savor the moments you have with your family and friends.
I don’t take credit for these thoughts. They come from “One Thousand Gifts”, by Ann Voskamp either as a direct quote where indicated or a summary of ideas:
When asked what was his most profound regret, the pastor answered, “Being in a hurry. Getting to the next thing without fully entering the thing in front of me. I cannot think of a single advantage I’ve ever gained from being in a hurry. But a thousand broken and missed things, tens of thousands, lie in the wake of all the rushing . Through all that haste I thought I was making up time. It turns out that I was throwing it away.”
In a world addicted to speed, we race for more and snag on time and leak empty. The longer we keep running, the longer the gash, and we drain, bleed away. Hurry always empties a soul.
“Time is a relentless river. It rages on, a respecter of no one. And this, this is the only way to slow time: When I fully enter time’s swift current, enter into the current moment with the weight of all my attention, I can slow the torrent be being all here. I only live the full life when I live fully in the moment…I slow and enter. And time slows. Weigh down this moment in time with attention full, and the whole of time’s river slows, slows, slows… Wherever you are, be all there.
We can only interact with God in the present. Though He exists in the past, present and future, WE can only be with him in the present and he calls himself the Great I AM. When I am present, I meet I AM, the very presence of a present God. In his embrace, time loses all sense of speed and stress and space and stands so still and holy.
And now this is taken from Jesus Calling, by Sarah Young
Trust me and refuse to worry, for I am your Strength and Song. You are feeling wobbly this morning, looking at difficult times looming ahead, measuring them against your won strength. However, they are not today’s tasks- or even tomorrow’s. So leave them in the future and come home to the present, where you will find Me waiting for you. Since I am your Strength, I can empower you to handle each task as it comes. Because I am your Song, I can give you Joy as you work alongside Me.
Keep bringing your mind back to the present moment. Among all my creatures, only humans can anticipate future events. This ability is a blessing, but it becomes a curse whenever it is misused. If you use your magnificent mind to worry about tomorrow, you cloak yourself in dark unbelief. However, when the hope of heaven fills your thoughts, the light of my presence envelops you. Though heaven is future, it is also present tense. As you walk in the light with Me, you have one foot on earth and one foot in heaven.
Your future is in My hands; I release it to you day by day, moment by moment. Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow. I want you to live this day abundantly, seeing all there is to see, doing all there is to do. Don’t be distracted by future concerns. Leave them to Me! Each day of life is a glorious gift, but so few people know how to live within the confines of today. Much of their energy for abundant living spills over the time line into tomorrow’s worries or past regrets. Their remaining energy is sufficient only for limping through the day, not for living it to the full. I am training you to keep your focus on my presence in the present. This is how to receive abundant Life, which flows freely form my Throne of Grace.”
Keep your thoughts in the present and don’t worry about the future. Be fully present in all you do this season. Look your loved ones fully in the face when they talk to you and give them your full attention. Don’t worry about completing all the things on your To-Do list. Just breathe, and don’t worry. “Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Matthew 6: 34