As we took the tree out of the box I was like… what?! Since when did we replace the waist-height tree with this huge tree that risks being hit by the ceiling fan? Since when did we own fairy lights in all colours, on strings so long that it takes forever to untangle them?
It’s been awhile since I’ve been involved with family celebrations and church Christmas events. Unlike the hustle and bustle that came with Christmas as a child, I’ve had mostly quiet Christmases in my years away from home. There is no holiday mood when you are rostered to work over public holidays. There was no one to really exchange presents with except for the the odd Kris Kringle and no reunions to attend aside from those kindly hosted for us “Christmas orphans”.
It was quieter too, from distractions that comes with the festivities.
As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” – Luke 10:38-42
Be hospitable, prepare gifts, write cards, enjoy catch ups, admire the lights and decorations, work at your ministry and performances. But if our preparations distracts us from being able to listen to God and be still before him, pause, and consider the one thing that Jesus speaks of. Even if we can’t partake in the festivities because of work or any other reasons (it is a bit sad but) the best part of Christmas still remains.
Merry Christmas :)