Life. Gets. Busy.
With Christmas around the corner, it’s only natural to feel the squeeze of holiday obligations. There’s so much to do in so little time! The presents, the festivities, the gatherings… and don’t forget everyday personal responsibilities. As we ease into the Christmas spirit, it can be easy to forget why Christmas is here – the coming of Jesus so He could be with us – God Immanuel.
As I sat with the Lord to journal, the Holy Spirit gave me unexpected words: “There are some things that need to be simplified.”
Lord, what does that mean?
For one, I realized that God was speaking this word as its opposite of where I can easily fall into – complicated and cluttered. There are layers of life that make intimacy with God a struggle, and instead, I come to Him tired with my leftovers. That’s not how I should be entering the Christmas season.
The Holy Spirit is challenging mindsets that are constantly on the move. The next project to complete, commitment to uphold, and activities to go to… do they need to be done? Have these pursuits – which are good in of themselves – been brought to the Lord first?
The reality is, God wants us, and He wants our best. For me, it is in the morning before my day gets going; I brew the coffee, settle in the couch (usually with Carmel, my dog), and start the day with the Scriptures. I put aside my anxious thoughts and bring my day to God. Although it can be a struggle to reorient my mind to not work on the to-do list, I set my heart to reflect on what the psalmist encouraged for each of us:
“Be still in the presence of the LORD, and wait patiently for him to act.” (Psalm 37:7 NLT)
The Lord has gifted us with another day – let’s see what He wants for us! If we dedicate our day, He can give us the strength, wisdom, and endurance to do what we could not do on our own. The Holy Spirit could initiate and point out complications that derail us from our dedication to Him. And sometimes, He wants us to wait – to not ‘make things happen’ but to be in the moment with Him.
A call to simplify is to focus on what truly matters. I think about this as a timely word for each person reading this: While there is much noise and people vying for your attention, take a moment to recollect your thoughts and ask the Lord, “What is truly important in this season?” God does not want you to be overwhelmed by busyness; he wants you to receive the outpouring of His love! The Holy Spirit will reveal to you what needs to wait, what can be set aside, and what needs to get done. Sit before the Lord, ask Him to simplify areas of your life, and see how Christ will empower you to be who He has called you to be. God is with you!
The Lord says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
Have a blessed week!