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Holy Day – Being Still At Christmas

December 21, 2017Connections

Woman in grey knitted sweater with traditional motifs holding in hands a white cup of hot coffee with steam coming out in the morning light

You only have to look across the street at the neighbour’s lights to see the signs of the upcoming Christmas holiday. Trees are in every store and the Christmas tunes are blaring. In the hustle and bustle of the season it’s easy to forget that the holiday is really a holy day. We can stop and remember the joys linked to this holy day – the sweet memories of childhood and the privilege we have to make some new memories this year.

Perhaps we shouldn’t worry so much about the materialism of it all and just realize that whether we like it or not children all over the world will continue to watch for Santa, Father Christmas, Papa Noel or El Nino Jesus, to leave them a Christmas treat or trinket. But this doesn’t stop them from also knowing, in deeply meaningful ways, that the greatest gift is the joy of Jesus in their hearts and His abundant love for them that will never end.

How can we enjoy the coming days and not merely survive them?

  • Be still and know that He is God – take time before the day’s craziness sets in, even just five minutes, to be still – resting and trusting in the “ONE” who knows you and loves you. Here are some excellent Bible verses to set the tone for being still:

– Isaiah 26:3 “You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.”

– Matthew 11:28-30 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

– Philippians 4:6-7 “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

  • Take time to read the New Testament accounts of Jesus’ birth and life during Advent.
  • Remember that if a young Jewish girl named Mary found a way to sing a song of praise – so can you. Her circumstances were difficult and about to get worse. Her family would never understand her predicament, and she had no idea of the stark reality of her future. But that didn’t stop this humble young girl from singing Mary’s song, found in Luke 1:46-55, which I’ve paraphrased below:

“My soul chooses to glorify the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for He is always mindful of me and my situation.

The Mighty One has done great things for me…holy is His name. His mercy extends to all those who fear him – from generation to generation – to me and to all of those to come.

He has performed mighty deeds for a young girl like me. He continues to fill my hungry soul with good things. He has helped me, His servant, and He remains merciful to me just like He promised to our Father, Abraham and to all of his descendants.

Therefore today—and throughout all my days:

I stand quiet before Him
I stand still
I know that He is God.”

I am learning that a few minutes of stillness with God become the essential foundation for everything else that I face on any given day – and that includes BOTH the holy day and the holiday!

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