“Jesus traveled through all the towns and villages of that area, teaching in the synagogues and announcing the Good News about the Kingdom. And he healed every kind of disease and illness.” – Matthew 9:35.
The Advent season has quite the ironic twist. It’s the time of year we most intend to reflect on our Savior’s birth, yet it’s the month we have the least time for reflection. We’re already busy, but we find ways to add holiday activities to our busy schedule: Christmas decorating, shopping, parties, traditions, crafts, events, and whatever else it takes to make it the “most wonderful time of the year.”
Our intention for these activities is to focus on the “reason for the season.” But it’s easy to lose sight of that goal. Christmas can quickly become the most stressful time of the year. And it might be the time in which we are most distracted. We live in a culture that wears busyness like a badge of honor. How do we practice the presence of the Lord in a season where there doesn’t seem to be any margin for more of God? We want to show up for everyone in our lives, but there’s not enough time in the day.
Jesus gets it. Jesus had a full day too. Jesus was busy too. But one thing is clear: Jesus, both God and Human, didn’t handle the busyness the way most of us do. For example, read Mark 1:21-45. In these several verses, a lot happens. Jesus is teaching in the synagogue; He heals many people, and crowds gather around Him. But it is also the pace of the events. In those verses, you’ll see the word “immediately” or words meaning the same thing used repeatedly. Reading those verses prompts you to want to catch your breath.
The bottom line is this. Jesus didn’t look at His watch until 5 pm when He could punch out and head to His car. He was busy. But His mission never ended. He believed every interaction with another human is important, powerful, and necessary. When the crowds arrived waiting to be healed, Jesus didn’t barricade the door. He continued to heal.
When we allow ourselves to get too busy, we don’t take the time to slow down and remember our relationship with God. God wants us to spend time daily to renew our relationship with Him. He wants to know about our failures and victories, strengths and weaknesses, and joys and disappointments. If we fail to remember Him daily, we get caught up in the distraction of pleasing other people.
We need to worship the Lord this advent season. The Bible says that God inhabits the praise of His people. Sometimes we get so busy that it’s easy to forget that. We forget that we belong to Him and need to put Him first.
God already values us more than anything. We don’t need to earn it. So as we go about following schedules today, let’s listen for God’s voice.
- Do you look at the Christmas Season and feel peace and joy for what Christ has done, or do you feel overwhelmed?
- When you look at your Christmas and holiday calendar, what do you need to do, and what should you eliminate to ensure you don’t miss Jesus again this year?