Don’t forget to be thankful. We’re not quite a week past Halloween and the stockings are already being hung and the sugarplum fairies are getting excited.
Don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas. I enjoy the baking and decorating and the sparkle in my children’s eyes. However, I’ve noticed some are so anxious to chase after some image of Christmas, they forget to stop and thank. Many unconsciously believe that by wrapping gifts, baking homemade candy or stringing lights, they will find the peace and joy, the carols promise.
Augustine claimed, “Without exception..all try their hardest to reach the same goal, that is, joy.”
We all want joy and for some of us we equate Christmas with joy. We decorate, bake and attend lots of parties in hopes of finding that joy and peace. But Christmas comes and goes and we realize, we didn’t find it, not this year. Maybe we’ll find it next year. Could it be that your level of joy, peace and contentment with your position in life is dependent most on your ability to give thanks for all that God has graciously given? When you are ready to throw in the towel because of your job, your hurting marriage or the weight of responsibilities, you may find yourself anxious and in need of a break. You are certainly not filled with joy or contentment. Yet, when you take time, making a lifestyle of giving thanks, you become grounded and reminded of the one You need most. Acknowledging His provision and graciousness in your life also acknowledges His presence. His presences is what produces peace, joy, contentment.
Thanks ——————–> Presence———————> Peace
Isaiah 26:3 “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.”[Tweet “Continual thanks leads to constant peace.”]
If you are decorating your Christmas tree and airing up your inflatable lawn decor weeks before the Macy’s Day parade, don’t get so caught up in the magic of Christmas that you forget. Don’t put unreasonable expectations about what the Christmas season can bring, if you haven’t taken time to really Thank God, rest in His Presence and truly experience His Peace.