Each week during the Advent season, I am featuring a devotional on who Jesus is, to help us prepare our hearts for Christ’s birth.
Isn’t it interesting how the holidays have this way of magnifying life? The good feels really good, and the hard parts seem really hard, almost unbearable. Some of us just can’t wait till Christmas is over.
Sitting exhausted from the day of shopping with four children, I waited for my husband to emerge from the Bose Store. All I could do was try not to fall asleep while sitting up, when I heard the dreaded question we all ask at Christmastime from the lady sitting next to me, “So, are you ready for Christmas?”
I wanted to say, “Do I look ready for Christmas sitting here in this busy mall with my crazy, wild, sugared-up four children?”
Instead, I nodded and said, “Just about, and you?”
Is it possible for any of us to be ready for Christmas? It seems we are all busy rushing around trying to create the perfect American Christmas. Between gifts, trees, decorations, cards, elves, Santa, parties, and the list goes on-and-on, there is preparation up until the last minute, even if we start in November.
Author Ann Voskamp writes,
“We’re ready for Christmas, not when we have all the gifts, but when we are ready for Christ-when we’re ready to give all of ourselves to Christ.”
My sister called and said, “My tree has been up for over a week with no decorations, and I’m still not done shopping. Kids are in school until the Friday before Christmas, and I am not sure I will be ready this year.”
I listened, feeling overwhelmed, in the parking lot of Dick’s Sporting Goods. “My shopping isn’t quite done either.”
“The Lord reminded me this morning; Christmas will come even if the tree stands bare and we never wrap the gifts. He is coming even if we are not ready.” So my sister asked, “Maybe it’s not about finishing our to-do-list. Maybe it’s about our hearts being ready?”
He came over 2000 years ago, and very few were ready. They were looking for Him to come as a king clothed in riches ready to take on the Roman Empire. Instead, He came as a baby clothed in only a cloth ready to surrender his will to the Father. Only the Magi and shepherds were ready that Christmas 2000 years ago.
“After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him” Matthew 2:1-2.
And why were the Magi ready to worship him? They were seeking him. Instead of asking the question am I ready, they asked where is he?
Have we forgotten to seek him? Have we forgotten to ask “Where is he?” in this season of rushing?
If we spend this season striving, trying to do more, we could miss worshiping him.
I sit writing this morning, less than a week till Christmas. Fog over-shadowing the horizon, remembering Jesus is. Jesus is our Deliverer. Jesus is the Savior of the World. Jesus is our Healer. Jesus is our Giver of grace. Jesus is our Restorer and our Comforter. Jesus is our Hope in the hopelessness. He demonstrated his love for us, while we were still sinners, he died for us. His blood still to this day breaks every stronghold, heals every wounded heart, and makes all things new. And He is worthy to be praised and sought after because He is.
You could go ahead and ask is there a way to simplify things this year. Maybe just cross off one thing on your list that just doesn’t need to be done.
Let’s not miss finding him because we are too busy….
He was enough 2000 years ago, and He is enough today. Even if by December 25th we never complete our list, He is all we need. So take a deep breath and lift your hands in worship and remember…He is.
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