As fun as it is, playing Santa for friends and family every year can become quite a chore. We can begin to feel frazzled and pulled in many directions.
Although many of us take pride in our skill at multi-tasking, at this time of year the planning, shopping, wrapping, baking, decorating, and attending special events sometimes leaves us feeling as limp as an over-stretched rubber band.
At times like this, I find that it helps to get up a few minutes early, stay up a few minutes late, or steal some time somewhere, to sharpen my life’s focus with prayer and re-reading the Christmas story from the Bible.
If you have ever taken a photo of a large group then you know how difficult it can be to keep each person in focus. But if you are taking a photo of one special person in the group, the task becomes easy; you simply put that one particular face in the center of the focus and adjust the lens until it is clear.
Life is like that. If every task has equal importance, then no one job gets our best efforts. Taking one job at a time, as if the project at hand were the only item on your “To Do” list, makes life manageable.
So if you are feeling stressed these days, take a few moments to breathe deeply, center your thoughts on the One whose birth we celebrate, and let him help you set your priorities so you can get through this season with peace and joy.
2 In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2 This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 And all went to be registered, each to his own town. 4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, 5 to be registered with Mary, his betrothed,[b] who was with child. 6 And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. 7 And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.
8 And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. 10 And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,14 “Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”[d
15 When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger.17 And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child. 18 And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. 20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.
21 And at the end of eight days, when he was circumcised, he was called Jesus, the name given by the angel before he was conceived in the womb.- Luke 2 (ESV)
Best wishes for a Blessed Christmas Season.