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Focusing on CHRISTmas

Originally published Tuesday, 03 December 2013.

My list has already gotten long … the Christmas get-togethers to attend, the gifts I want to make, the Christmas movies I want to watch, the holiday sweets that I hope to bake.

I truly love this time of year, but there are so many things I want to pack into a short few weeks that my mind easily becomes overloaded just thinking about them. So overloaded that if I’m honest, they can make me lose focus on what this season is all about.

Personally, this year has been filled with a lot of tears, hard lessons and healing. If God has taught me anything the last 12 months, it’s that while everything else can feel like a mess, His love remains steadfast and true. While people may come and go, He will never leave me.

I want Christ’s birth to be the sole focus of this season for me.

“Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord”. -Luke 2:11 (NIV)

I want the weight of those words to soak into my soul. I don’t want the festivities of this time of year to overshadow the most important gift of all---a Baby, our Savior, born in a manger so that we wouldn’t be lost. It’s a gift so amazing that there doesn’t seem to be words for it, a gift that the human mind can barely begin to comprehend.

With that in mind, I’ve started an Advent Study plan so that I start each morning with the sweet reminder of what is to be celebrated during this precious season. It’s the first Advent-focused study I’ve done and it’s just what I needed.

“Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” –Luke 2:14 (NIV)

What things do you do to help keep you focused on the true meaning of Christmas amid the hustle and bustle of the season?