Thursday, December 19, 2019

The True Magic and Awe of the Holiday Season


December is a lead up to Christmas and New Year's Day.  It is filled with so many activities, concerts, preparing, to do lists and more. 

As soon as Thanksgiving is done, we rush right on into December.  Flinging the doors wide open, busying ourselves, rushing, getting caught up in the hustle and bustle...and for what?  Before we know it Christmas is here, come and gone just as quick as thunderstorm rolls through sometimes. 

We are left wondering, the day after New Year's, where did it all go?  Where did December go? November?

Halloween hits and passes, then it all seems to blur as the days speed by and then we are dropped into min January.  Feeling like it all passed by quick, too quick we are left wondering, sometimes overwhelmed, sometimes sad.

But what if we slowed things down?  Not just a little, but a lot.  What if we took each holiday that comes our way to slow down, to really dive into the season, to really be present?

Saying we are busy, our calendar is full is a badge of honor nowadays.  It's one thing to fill it with your priorities, downtime, activities, and such in a harmony balanced way.  But when we pack it so full, are we really full?  Have we really filled our days, our life the way God intended?

We are in a the season of Advent in our house.  As a Christian family, we put God as a priority in everything.  As individuals, as a marriage, as parents God is center. 

Advent is a time of preparing.  Preparing for the wonderful, magical gift that we are about to receive on Christmas.  It is about the unending love, unending grace that God gives us through Jesus.  Yes, the story happened long ago, but Advent gives us the time to walk through the story over and over each year.  To really dive in and understand what the season is about.  To slow down and receive.

It is about the magic and awe in the season, if we slow down and look.  It is about the ultimate gift we are receiving, the one true perfect gift.  We can see it all through the lights, the trees, the stories, the time with family and friends, the giving and receiving.  But we have to be present and open.  We have to slow down in between all the activities, traditions, schedules.

Christmas truly doesn't start until December 25 and then the twelve days following are the Christmas season.  However, the magic and awe, the giving and receiving doesn't end.  It continues on, day after day, through the whole year if we let it.  If we let it carry through our lives throughout the rest of the year, we can carry the ultimate gift with us.  Not only that, we can share it with others.

Isn't that what Christmas is really about?  The magic and awe, the feeling we get when we slow down and truly take it all in, and when we open our hearts to what is truly meant for the season.  What if we let that carry us through into January?  Then on into the next month and the next?

How do you prepare for Christmas?  How do you spend your holiday time leading up to it all?

Have you lost the magic and awe of the season?  What would it be like if you brought it back?

As we are winding down the days of December, gearing up for the holiday season, and heading into a new year I encourage you take time each day and slow it down.  I encourage you to look for the magic and awe, not just in this season, but every season...every day.

Something I have learned over the years since having kids is that they really truly know what the season is about and how to take it in.  This is where the magic and awe really shine brightly.  This year, this season, look at the world around you through the eyes of a 4 year old and maybe, just maybe you will not only see the magic and awe of the season, but feel it too and believe it.

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