Lord, my body is throbbing from fatigue from all the Christmas preparations.
When I stop to consider the Messiah and His coming, I can’t stop my mind.
I keep making mental lists of details,
names I want to remember,
things I have yet to do
and foods I must buy or prepare.
But I am not complaining, Lord.
I love having a reason to do special things in Your name for people I love.
I am grateful that Your coming makes the whole world sing!
The business of Christmas brakes us all—
even those who don’t know You for themselves—
from the craze of commerce for profit and accomplishment
and turns our attention to others.
The bell-ringers of the Salvation Army have become as much a part of the joy
as Santa at the mall.
And although the crèche can no longer be assembled in the city square,
more of us are taking time to tell the children in our families
why we make the manger and its tiny Occupant
such a part of our homes.
I feel the urgency more than ever as a new century is emerging
to make for another generation
a celebration that will make this
the most important event of the year.
This must not become just another day or even just another holiday.
We must tell each other and the children
that this Babe in a manger
was and is
the coming together of heaven and earth.
But, Lord, help me keep that focus in my own heart.
Help me remember that there is nothing of value
that doesn’t demand sacrifice and effort.
You, Yourself came on a quiet night in a small town,
but it wasn’t the idyllic, effortless night depicted in the windows.
There was blood and water and pain.
There were insufficient provisions and fear.
There were visitors at a time when Mary must have wanted privacy.
From then on, You were putting Your own needs as a human being
on the back burner for the Big Picture.
So, it is not out of character for Christmas to be wonderful and demanding,
a time when fatigue and effort are invested
for a few amazing moments of glory.
It is for love.
All this day, let me remember—it is for love.
You can read more in Gloria’s book, A Book of Simple Prayers. Click here.