Updated: Nov 15
Christmas hullabaloo is in full force. If you are anything like me you are feeling a twinge of a holiday hangover already with kids finishing school and checking off the list of all the pajama days and don't forget the special snack at school days, the ugly sweater parties, the fancy hot chocolate party, the secret Santa and alllllll the things. These things are sweet, yes, but can make a mom's eyes bug out of her head like that emoji I use on the regular 😳. But amid the Christmas crazy what are we, as Christian contemplatives, doing to remember what this season is truly about?
Are you committed to an Advent study or are you just trying to survive? What about those of us that fall between the ultra disciplined themed Bible study checklist person and the survival mode person? What are we doing? Not sure if it is any consolation, but for me, I needed something simple this year for Advent, something more ongoing and reflective. So I landed on a couple of key words to settle my heart and mind in the midst of the hustle and bustle.
I chose simplify because this is a concept that was impressed upon me by a great teacher and mentor Nancy Kane. She encouraged the discipline of simplicity to make room for more time with God. What is cluttering our minds, our space, our lives, our calendars that take away from our main purpose on this Earth-to love, be with, and glorify our Lord Jesus? This simple yet complex concept has been a gentle, yet beautiful reminder for me to shake out the noise and zero in on the main things.
Adore Him is on repeat in my mind, especially this time of year, because of the song-Oh Come All Ye Faithful. Those words implore those of us that are Faithful to Christ to not just follow, but to Adore. When I think of adore I think dote over, linger on, see with my whole being. That is what I want within my relationship with Jesus-to see Him and know Him with my whole being. I want to be overly aware of His presence and adore Him. I want to notice Him in all things. I want to feel His nearness. I want my life to be an outpouring of that adoration. I want to be overwhelmed and my breath taken by the big and the small of our vast Creator.
At this point in my life, with four kids, a dog, two fish....I think we still have two fish.....a husband, ministry and all the elements of life- I needed simple. I needed an instant source so these quick words have been a life saver to set my mind on things Above this Advent season.
So while you are working hard to make this a special time of year for your family and friends, settle your soul and your mind and focus on things Above. Remember that Jesus came humbly into the world, through his teenage mom in an animal stable. The King of the world kept it simple.
Let's put this into practice::
(screenshot or save this photo to your phone so when things feel chaotic- you can come back to it)
Release yourself from striving. Give that to Jesus. Pause and notice one thing around you that brings you peace or joy.