You are probably wondering where I’ve been the last couple of weeks if you follow my blog on a regular basis. A week ago Sunday I was one of those lucky ones who got a case of an ugly flu the week before Christmas. Even though I was out of the game for the last 10 days, I’ve been reading everyone else’s blogs for the holidays between blowing my nose and taking my temperature. Many were about depression, stress at the holidays, fighting with family, missing loved ones, etc. Although they all offered good tips for surviving the season, I was determined that if I were to write a Christmas blog, it was going to be happy. Do you know how hard it is to come up with happy thoughts when you typically suffer from the holiday blues and then additionally can’t breathe, have a fever over 100 and haven’t been able to eat or sleep right in days?
However. Things are different today. We are almost through Christmas day and I think I’m going to survive! It’s been a quiet day since we did most of our family get-togethers over the weekend so I’ve had a lot of time to reflect in between my naps. As I reminisced about the holidays, I have a lot of fond memories of some great Christmases and then I remember some that were not so great too. Then I thought, “How do you really measure whether a holiday was good or not?”
Then I was reminded gently once again. It’s not about the ham or presents that measure a Christmas. Jim and I were sitting around yesterday waiting to go to Christmas Eve service. We were both talking about how no matter how horrible or wonderful our celebrations are at home there is something special about being with our church family as we enter into the celebration of our Savior’s birth. I am especially blessed when our kids and grandkids choose to join us in that celebration. It truly melts my heart as we sit there unified…as one family…worshipping the Reason for why we celebrate in the first place.
So today, I just simply want to focus and say, “Happy Birthday, Jesus. Thank you for all that you have done for me and my loved ones. Thank you for my family as well as my church family and friends. Today, it is because of You we celebrate. It is because of You we live. It is because of You that we have hope. It is because of You we have purpose. I give my life to you all over again. It’s not much but it is the greatest gift I can think to give to You on this special day. Take me, fill me, use me in any way you see fit in 2013. I love you, my dear precious, Savior. Happy birthday.”
So as your celebrations wind down and all of the ornaments are once again packed away for another year, don’t lose focus. Remember, it’s not about our celebrations but rather; it is about why we celebrate! If you’re going to make a difference in the year ahead, it is going to depend on you. Are you planning to spend your days wisely? Do you have goals for 2013 with serving Jesus in the center of them? If not, I would challenge you to refocus. I would challenge you to devise a plan and put Jesus first every day in 2013. Let’s get RADICAL for Jesus in the new year! Won’t you join me?
P.S. For those of you who thought that my white elelphant gift was pretty nifty with all of the things it could do, I thought I’d break it to you gently that we used photoshop. It is an old TV/DVD device that has seen its better days. Most of the time it doesn’t even turn on! Since I had so many questions and many were amazed at all it could do, I thought I’d share! Too funny! Love you all! Thanks for keeping me laughing!
Here it is again for your enjoyment! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2SlvcZrFjag