by Christie Perkins
The busy inns turned away Mary and Joseph. Too much going on. What they didn’t realize was that there was a special little package arriving. A package that even they would need: the Christ child and His gifts to us.
If only they knew they simply needed to just let Him in. Yes, the inns were full (much like my own Christmas rush days- except full of things to do). What I didn’t realize is that I have to “make room” for Him.
It doesn’t just happen all on it’s own. I learned this lesson last week.
The busy, dizzy, whirlwind of the season was settling in. Too much to do. The rush of the season gave me every reason to not write this week, or last. And it settled in more than just my writing. I saw evidence of it in my house crumbs, my kids homework shirking, and my store and internet shopping runs and reruns.
Will anything ever get done?
So sometime last week I started the day without prayer. Not really a good idea when I’m feeling the rush of the season jam-cramming into my soul. Well, I technically I prayed but it was only a to-do list prayer. You know the kind, where you quickly run through what you need accomplished and end it abruptly. There wasn’t any heart poured into it at all.
I didn’t like how I was feeling. I love Christmas and it seems that suddenly all I’m feeling is the weight of what needs to be done. And that’s not fun. The rolling list consumes my head and I face the day with dread.
The Christmas Inn is full to capacity. No room.
So I regroup and touch the ache in my soul… I ask Heavenly Father in prayer to help me to feel meaning of Christmas and to prioritize and get the things done that I need to get done. I don’t want this season to fly by without feeling the reason for the season. It’s my attempt to let Him in.
And it’s funny how what I think “needs” to be done is not really what “needs” to be done. I’m grateful for prayer.
So I rush off to my to do list and suddenly my stomach is rudely interrupting my plans. Its growling and scowling at my effort to be effective. I have a perfect response.
Not today. It’s not a good day for breakfast. Maybe tomorrow.
Then a little thought enters into my head. “Do the important things first.”
I grumble a little about the 20 minute delay. But I know the power of priorities (and taking care of my body is a really important priority). I actually enjoy my peanut butter and jam toast more than I thought I would. I feel better too.
Ok, jump, dump, swish.. I’m off to my list.
The Christmas Inn is so busy I have to meet all these people’s needs on my list.
But, I glance over and my little guy is sitting in a little bubble of peace enjoying himself at the table. He’s working on 5 different puzzles. His eyes light up and ask me if I want to do a puzzle with him.
Hm. Well. That’s a trick question. How do I answer this when my to do list is shouting in my ear. “Yes, I want to but mommy has so much to do today,” I emphasize the word “so” and throw on the pacifying phrase, “maybe later.”
It’s pretty much the same excuse I gave my growling stomach.
I’m sure the people at Christmas Inn wanted to let Mary and Joseph in but there just wasn’t room. Maybe next week, they think.
And again the thought from earlier reappears, “Do the important things first.” I see that this is quickly becoming the theme for the day. And what I think is important and what Heavenly Father knows is important aren’t always the same thing. I trust Him, He is always right. But then I quickly remembered what I prayed for earlier. Prayer seems to be complicating my plans yet I know that in the end I will be grateful. I needed to feel the reason for the season and to prioritize. I’ll be getting what I want if I trust in this thought.
I better follow through.
My little guy is standing there in electrifying blue pajamas. His hair is doing stand up tricks. Under his smile and sparkling eyes I see a twitch of sadness at my lame excuse. How many times have I told him I would do something with him later only to fall through? My to do list has been taking charge lately. Stinkin’ list.
I change my mind quickly. “You know what? Yes, I do want to do a puzzle with you.” I drop my plan and realize that this will only take another 15- 20 minutes.
I find myself enjoying our puzzle time and in this brief moment our hearts reconnect. I’m feeling something. Ah. Yes, the reason for the season: people. And suddenly the Christmas Inn has cleared a little corner. Yes. I like this.
Clearing Room at the Christmas Inn
Food, dudes, and adjusting my moods. My priorities are falling into place.
So this started my day. A prayer and a desire to feel something besides the gushing rush of the Christmas season. I’m relearning to listen to the little thought that tells me to do the important things first. And as I do so I find that the Christmas Inn has a nice little room available.
And when I truly take care of the little important things my heart starts to remember the reason for the season. I’m more at peace. And I’m happy.
Throughout the day I found myself stopping with all the thinking of things, and simply focusing on what true happiness brings. I read scriptures, I snuggled, I played games with the kids, we read a Christmas story by Christmas tree lights. I didn’t do anything drastic or flamboyant. I just simply stopped the rush and felt the hush.
And the Christmas Inn makes way for the Savior to enter in. And somewhere in the rush of the season I feel great joy in knowing that I made room for the important things.
I’m going to work extra hard this week to clear a suite at the Christmas Inn.
Take the time to stop and feel a positive emotion. If you do that then you will know that you made room for the important things. That your day had meaning. And that the spirit of Christmas can enter in.
So, if this Christmas season, your caught up in the rush. Pause for a moment and just feel the hush. Let it calm you and work its way into your heart. Feel Christmas… if even just for this week. It’s not over yet, make this week a Christmas of no regrets.
This is season we celebrate His birth. There is a special spirit at Christmas, no doubt. Don’t let it get shoved out by the unimportant things. One simple little moment each day will make this Christmas much more meaningful. Take time to do the important things first. Take care of your body, your spirit, your family. Take time to think and find meaning in your life. Do the things that count. Take the time to stop and drop that list. There’s a special little package waiting for you.
Slide on over Christmas rush… hush, we are letting the Christ child in.
Enjoy! And Merry Christmas from our house to yours!
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