Proverbs 16:9 ”In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps.”
When it comes to holidays, Christmas is our favorite. We always put forth some effort into our decorations, adding each year. We have a goal, you see. One that has been in place since we were first married, and I took my husband to “Gabriel Lane” to see the most amazing Christmas lights he had ever seen. The entire neighborhood decorated. Even the Jewish residents would have blue and white lights, Star of David décor. There was a house on the street that had a Candy Cane theme. Since Christmas was his favorite time of year, and since we both loved this house the most. That was our goal.
Over the years there have been some Christmases where the budget was tight, or time didn’t seem to be on our side. I even remember saying to my husband one year…. “You keep saying that this is your favorite time of the year. You say that, but I don’t think you mean it”. Why did I say this? Because he wasn’t getting our decorations up fast enough. In fact there was one year we didn’t have our lights up at all & I was FURIOUS. Like, steam coming out of my ears furious. It put a damper on the entire holiday for me.
How ridiculous I was being. I vowed to never be that way again. I was being a Martha in a very Mary moment. I was focused on tasks, my to do list, my timeline…. it was affecting my time with my family & my attitude toward others. It took my focus off the reason for the season, Jesus.
This year, the lights and snowflakes were hung. But all of our yard decorations, we forgot. The tree was trimmed, but all the other indoor decorations, we forgot. Cookies for Santa, were baked… but only thanks to an early Christmas Eve gift from my mother of Easy Bake Ovens for the girls. Reindeer food…? Um, I had some carrots in the freezer. Christmas Eve came and went. Christmas morning came and went. It was later that day, I realized we didn’t even take any photos of the kids opening their gifts. We forgot.
And the most remarkable thing? No one cared. It was about us, it was about enjoy time together. It wasn’t about fuss. We opened our doors that day and neighborhood kids came in and out to visit. It’s been a few days since, still no pictures of the kids with their gifts. I forgot. It is so easy to get caught up in the details, our plans for how things should go or look. But God often has a different agenda because his is not based on tasks but on relationship.
God, I pray for those of us …. who get caught up in the details, may you soften our hearts and open our eyes to the things we are missing out on. Let details be forgotten & memories made in 2014.