My devotional reading struck a chord in me this morning. It encouraged me to prepare my heart and clear out the clutter for the celebration of the miraculous birth. I began to think about the clutter that had invaded my heart this past year. Covid, politics, financial strains, quarantine, postal delays... they've all affected us in 2020. Our little comfort zone has been rocked, and my worry meter has been off the charts!
As I prayed away the layers of stress for the day, I found that at the center of it all was joy. Pure joy that God was still with me. He was in the Christmas lights all around the house. He was in the holiday music that I play throughout the day. He was in the laughter of my boys watching funny movies. He was in the twinkle in hub's eyes as he bit into a homemade cookie.
My outside lights in the front yard don't work this year. Hub changed out the outlet, but nothing works that is plugged in. The outlet in the back yard that is also on that breaker works just fine. I cannot tell you how much stress that has caused me the last couple of weeks. This morning, the lights in the back went out. The breaker was tripped so I flicked the switch, but whenever I turn the lights on it trips again. I tried three times to fix it with no success. This was all after reading the devotional, so I decided to shake my head and say hallelujah instead of a few other words that were going through my mind. I thanked God that we had a house and that the power was working inside. I think "hallelujah" will be my go-to-word whenever I feel the tension begin to rise. I wish I'd thought of that three weeks ago. I have no doubt my family has that same wish!
Over the next 48 hours, I'm going to soak in all the Christmas that I possibly can and live in the moment. I'm going to bake Paris puffins while singing carols. I'm going to hug on the three guys that live with me a few more times than the norm. I'm going to be thankful for the things we DO have instead of worrying about what we don't. Will this be a challenge? Of course it will! Lord knows it will be nearly impossible for me not to blow a gasket before noon, but I'm going to try my best to let the next two days be stress free. That's the greatest gift I can give to my family.
I've always heard the momma is the heart of the home. If my heart is filled with anxiety, how in the world can I expect my family to have a merry Christmas? It's time for me to listen to the angel's, "fear not". This year, I'm going to interpret that as "Chill out!" Can I get a Hallelujah?
Here's our virtual Christmas card for 2020. Be merry and filled with stress-free JOY!