Been to the malls yet?

Good day friends! I pray your week and weekend went well!

Christmas is only a couple weeks away and I’m sure you’ve noticed the busyness at the stores and malls. Let’s top up our coffees and see what precious words we can cling to this week to keep us focussed on the true reason for the season…

Readings for Dec 15: Third Sunday in Advent

Isaiah 35:1-10; Psalm 146; James 5:7-11; Matthew 11:2-15

Be patient, then brothers and sisters, until the Lord’s coming. . . . Don’t grumble against one another, brothers and sisters, or you will be judged. The judge is standing at the door. (James 5:7a, 9)

Have you started hitting the stores yet? Have you gone to the mall to get some Christmas gifts yet? If so, how did you do?

Advent 3

The malls and stores can be chaos at this time of year while people scurry around to get their Christmas purchases. The closer you get to Christmas, the more chaotic it gets. People seem to become so impatient and will do anything to bypass the long lineups or to get the parking spot closest to the entrance, even if it means cutting in front of someone else. People’s patience can seem non-existent and their high level of stress seems to give them the right to say and do the nastiest of things. Can you relate? Do you get caught up in the heat of the Christmas shopping and parking chaos?  Oh I must admit it can sometimes get the best of me.

Isn’t that exactly what Satan wants us to experience at a time that should be the most exciting and holy? Doesn’t he strive for us to be impatient,  hateful, and anxiety-filled to the point that we hate, just absolutely hate, ‘doing’ Christmas. Doesn’t he desire that we are filled with stress and grumbling at a time when we should be eagerly anticipating the birth of our Saviour. Do not let Satan, the world around you, or your sinful self, draw you into the chaos of the world at this time. Do not be fooled. Before you know it, the Lord will be here. He is coming, and he is coming soon.

So take off that layer of anxiousness and judgement, and clothe yourself with patience and peace. Remember that Jesus is the Reason for the Season, not the gifts and all the ‘to-do’s. Give yourself the time to do the things that need to get done with the understanding that it will be crazy out there. Do not expect anything less. Just like Jesus, you know how people are going to act in their sinfulness but don’t let it have power over you or cause you to sin. But again, be patient. Think on him who is coming, the Saviour of the world, and rejoice and sing. Sing to the Lord, praise his name; proclaim his salvation day after day. (Psalm 96:2) Hallelujah! Come Lord Jesus! Come!

Prayer: Dear Lord, please forgive me for getting caught up in the chaos that can come in preparation for Christmas. Please help me set aside the time I need to do what I need to do to prepare for the festivities of your birth. Give me patience and understanding of the people I will encounter on my excursions. Help me to still be your light to those I meet, and help me to continue to remember, rejoice and sing your praises for the plan of salvation you prepared for me through the birth of Jesus. Glory to God in the highest, and peace to his people on Earth! In Jesus’ name I pray. AMEN!

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