(Today, I’m letting you in on a little preview of Abiding Joy – Pondering the birth of Jesus. It’s a 20 day advent devotion I wrote this past year, after feeling like the Christmas season was RUSHING past me, and I had no time or space to ponder Christ’s birth. I hope you enjoy this sample. Click the graphic to receive Abiding Joy in your inbox!)
Today’s Reading: John 15:1-11
A perfect scenario of the days and weeks leading to Christmas would be this: A slower pace, making time to be with loved ones. Time to sit and listen to them spin tales of days gone by; time spent dreaming of days yet to come. Time listening to their stories. Time to BE, and not DO. Abiding with those we love.
To abide is to remain with, stay, or dwell. This takes time – time that we never seem to have during the rush of the Christmas season.
Dwelling conjures images of lingering by a warm fire, embers glowing orange, sipping hot chocolate with white, fluffy marshmallows. Of being together with those you love. Talking, spending quality time. Not in a hurry to leave. Not in a hurry to move on to the next thing.
Yet it happens every year. Time gets away from me. The frenzy of shopping for just the right gift; rushing here and there searching for ingredients for that perfect Christmas dessert; seeing white space on the calendar one day, disappearing the next.
Oh, don’t get me wrong. Everything is fun. Great food, great friends and family visits. But before you know it, Christmas has come and gone and I feel like I’ve missed the most important parts of it:
Time abiding with Jesus.
Time listening to His story.
And Him with me.
Now, that’s Christmas!
Together, let’s purpose to make this year the year we slow down and abide with Jesus in joy!
Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. John 15:4 (NASB)
Points to Ponder:
*Spend time each day being with Jesus in His word. Don’t rush. Enjoy the story of His birth. See it through fresh eyes. Let it remain in you all day.
*Is there someone you could spend time with this week? A nursing home resident? A veteran? Someone who needs a listening ear. Give them the gift of time this Christmas.