The Christmas List

Thanksgiving is next week. Black Friday is right after that. Christmas is only 38 days away. We will usher in the New Year in just 45 days…that’s about the average amount of time you take to close on a house. There will be endless get togethers, shopping trips, holiday parties and cards to be sent between now and then…Life can get so busy at this time of year!

I feel like more and more, time just speeds up the closer we get to the end of the year. There are so many things I want to do, especially for the holidays, with my family and friends. I can feel my agenda of events starting to take over and consume my calendar. If I try to hold tightly to the time, like sand in an hour glass, it simply starts trickling through my fingers. There’s simply not enough time. 

No, wait, there’s no less time than there was 20-30 years ago. There’s no less hours in my day today than there were last year or the year before. Time hasn’t changed, my calendar has, my priorities have. Now, I have a husband, two lively boys, a growing church family and many more added responsibilities than I did those 20-30 years ago, when all I had to worry about was getting home on time for curfew, getting the next 5-page paper done, or what I planned to wear for a night out with friends. 

Yes, there are more things required of me in this day and time; however, these things should not distract me from those things which are of high importance in my life before the holiday season hits. My list may adjust some, but those top 3-5 things shouldn’t alter simply because I have added desires and agendas during Christmas time. 

My list may not be exactly like yours, and, honestly, if it were, I might wonder why…we have different family dynamics; we live different lives. Yet, we all have a purpose, and we all commitments we have made. We must set our priorities in such a way that we keep those important things, and those important people, at the top. 

Even during this very busy season, my God, my family, and our staff and church family are the most important things on that list. These things don’t change, simply, because it’s a new season, a more hectic time. These things can’t take a backseat simply because I’d like to add a few more items to my list. I simply have to become more disciplined and deliberate in my approach to them. I have to become more aware of my intentions, my agendas and my follow through, and sometimes, I have to learn to say no to something I’d like to do “on a whim” to stay consistent in doing something that I’ve made a commitment to do. 

Sometimes, our family can be placed on hold simply because we’re working more hours to accommodate the Christmas wish list, when, maybe, we just need to get back to the simpler things of life. Sometimes, our commitments can be delayed simply because we had an act of spontaneity due to the holiday season, when it would have been better to stay consistent in those promises we once made. Sometimes, we need to hold onto those things (or people) of tradition and value and not forsake them for “the newest and the brightest” things found to be on the shelf. This isn’t going to be true for everyone, and there will be endless variables to this equation; however, if we are truly honest with that face that stares back at us in the mirroe, we know when we’ve let a priority slip by the wayside. We know when we’ve excuses away a commitment we should’ve held dear. 

This holiday season, let’s make a point to remember the things that are on top of the list; those things of importance and meaning. It doesn’t mean we can enjoy the fun events of the holiday, and it doesn’t mean we have to miss out on something new and fun to do, but let’s not forsake one to grasp hold of another! Let’s learn to balance and prioritize on the important once so that we can maximize our efforts! 😊