I seem to be surprised a lot by the passage of time. Sometimes it's hard to settle down in the midst of all the internal and external chaos. We are entering into a season of holidays that are filled with so many events and celebrations. Each year this season often sneaks up on me and I feel a sense of being overwhelmed by all that happens in the next 13 days. When the to-do list keeps growing, my stress level increases and then I am reminded of God's invitation through the prophet Isaiah:
All of you who are thirsty, come to the water! Whoever has no money, come, buy food and eat! Without money, at no cost, buy wine and milk! Why spend money for what isn't food, and your earnings for what doesn't satisfy? Listen carefully to me and eat what is good; enjoy the richest of feasts. Listen and come to me; listen, and you will live. I will make an everlasting covenant with you, my faithful loyalty to David.
When I get overwhelmed during this season, I have learned to stop and notice what I am doing, what I am buying, and how I am using my time. God's promise is for a deeper life, a different way of living, one that doesn't balance on the edge of chaos and collapse but is grounded in God's abundant, generous, restful life.
At the height of his success, when the crowds pressed him for more, Jesus drew away to quiet places to pray (Luke 5:16). When anyone else would have been hurrying faster, trying to perform bigger miracles and preaching to more people, he took a slower path, really seeing even lepers along the way (Luke 17:14) and noticing a woman who touched the hem of his cloak (Luke 8:45).
Life, schedules, demands, needs - they'll never let up. But God's promise is that in the midst of life's chaos, in spite of life's chaos, there is a different path, a better way, into which we can live.
I would invite you to be overwhelmed by the presence of God in the birth of our Savior rather than overwhelmed by the chaos of the season.
Today, what will you do to live into that better way, grounded in God's abundant life?
May you find God's peace and enjoy the richest of feasts as we enter into a season of thankfulness and gratitude for the amazing gift of God, in Jesus Christ, our Savior.