Hello Church Family,
We’re only a few short weeks from Christmas, and in the thick of what many people feel is a hectic season. The parties and pace, anxiety from family and finances, along with a rise in stress level and body weight can make this a strained time for many. But maybe you’re like me and you love this time of year anyway or at least you want to. No matter how you feel about this season, let me share with you two personal practices that I think can add a lot more joy and depth to our Advent and Christmas season.
1. Be Quiet
Carve out a few moments for silence and reflection without having to be someplace, do something, or buy something. Put the phone down. Turn off the TV and just sit in front of the Christmas tree. Open your life to the Light and Peace of Jesus. Imagine the night of Jesus’ birth when God the Father used the calming voice and hands of Mary to wrap and hold the wriggling infant until he rested at peace. This is what each of us needs. We all need to rest in the Father’ s care for a few moments until we stop squirming.
2. Pay attention to good Christmas music
Scripture shows us there was music everywhere in the first Christmas story, from the angels singing loudly in the sky as they announced his birth to shepherds, to Mary singing in response to her own amazing news.
And today, we have all kinds of wonderful Christmas music that can focus our hearts and minds on Jesus and what his coming means for us. So, listen to it. Sing it. Let it lift your soul. Let the words sink in and affect you.
Think about how much space there is in your life for Jesus as you sing let every heart prepare him room in “Joy to the World.”
Consider the tragic global news in our world, the pain in our community and in our own hearts and let your soul long for the truth of “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear.”
The depth and truth of some carols provide exactly what our souls desire, so I encourage all of us to sing them and listen to them with your mind and heart engaged. You see, you and I were created to join the angelic refrain, “Glory to God in the Highest,” and whether you are musical or not, you will find good Christmas music can help you do exactly that.
Looking forward to celebrating the season with you,