Still not ready…
The end of the holiday season…I’m just not ready for it to be over. I know by now some people (perhaps most) have all their twinkling lights tucked back into their respective boxes, hidden in a closet or basement or attic waiting for this new year to come to a close. It will be a long wait.
Me, I’m not ready to shed the feeling that these simple things bring to my home. I revel in the soft light, embracing its warmth and holding onto the memories they bring to mind. Honestly, I could use these lights all year round. This season of CHRIST seems to pass too quickly. In a rush it feel like it’s here and we are quickly scrounging to get everything done…the lights hung, the tree up, the cookies baked, and the presents bought and wrapped.
Then BAM, the day hits and we watch sleepy-eyed, as bouncy children unwrap the gifts throwing the paper to the side that we so carefully (and exhaustedly) wrapped the gifts in just last night. We rush then, to get ourselves presentable and go to our respective places of celebration or open our home to others that might need a bit of cheer. After eating way too much and perhaps opening even more gifts we struggle to get our sugar-high kiddos into bed. (Seriously, how can they still be awake after that early morning wake-up call they gave us?) After cleaning up a bit we drop our head to our pillows and that special day we look forward to with so much anticipation is over in a snap.
For some the day after means clearing it all away. Wrapping paper is out in the trash, lights and ornaments are down and the tree sits in a lonely fashion beside the curb. Others will keep things up for just a bit longer, hesitant to let go of the holiday celebration.
And then our eyes turn to the beginning of the new year. Some of us look back at the old year seeing joy, some sadness, some regrets and some just look forward to what the new year might bring. Many turn to God, seeking what He might have for them. We struggle to put resolutions into place that we might actually keep. The goal always is to better ourselves. The goal is to change. We hope for a freshness that can be found in starting over, starting again. This year, we pledge, this year we will accomplish our goals. And some will, but many won’t… Good thing there’s always next. (C’mon, be honest -how many more times do you think you’ll make it to the gym?)
And then January first passes and life “MUST” return to normal. No more extra cheerfulness, no more extra kindness, no more holiday spirit. Now we just wait for the next holiday to come along. The next time we can take a day or two off of work and relax. Until then, we live for the weekends.
Well, I’m ready for the new adventures this year is bringing. I’m ready to work toward my new goals. I’m ready to see where this path my Father is leading me on will take me. And at the same time, I’m not ready to let go of this season that focuses (for my family at least) on the coming of our dear Savior. I’m not ready to take down the twinkling lights of warmth that decorate my home. I’m not ready to let go of that child’s excitement waiting for what is around the corner. Even though just last night we finally watched that last Christmas movie on our list, I am just not there yet. Perhaps there is something else I need to learn or grasp from this miraculous birth story. Perhaps there is one more thing I need to grasp to carry through to this new year. Maybe I just haven’t seen enough snow yet…
I may take down my lights this week or next. I may relegate all those boxes to the basement storage. I may actually take a break from listening to Christmas music. However, I won’t be letting go of this desire to understand more. I won’t be letting go of the thoughts I have about This Baby and His parents. I will spend a little more time digging deeper into His story that I might be able to appreciate and understand even more the miracle of His death and resurrection.
And also, I am grasping ahold of what He has for me. Together with my husband we are working to create a family mission statement. I am beginning to understand how vital a mission statement for life is. We seek His face. We search for His truth. We turn towards His goals for our lives. We RUN towards the place He has waiting for us. We stand up strong. We lay aside all the clutter and junk of modern day “responsibilities” and pick up the treasures that have fallen by the wayside. I am eager to share this with you. But I will not be rushed into creating something trite. We are creating a constitution for our family. We are creating a lasting document. A living document. We are creating something that will carry on through the generations of our family. This is something that is changing who I am. And I believe the fullness of the history of Jesus plays a part in how this is designed for my family. And so I encourage you to hang on to the seeds that are inside of you. Don’t rush to drop things because the season is over or it’s expected of you. Don’t rush into the next thing. Take your time. Be wise with the gift that has been given to you. Live in the moment that God has for YOU, whatever that moment may be.
(And maybe, just maybe I will leave one little set of lights up this year just like I did last year…just to remember.)