I admit it! I'm more of a Martha personality who finds myself being a Mary wanna be in regards to spending time with Jesus. It's so easy to fall into the trap of being fully occupied and missing out on the greatest opportunity to mankind. Now at this time of year, the stress of cleaning, decorating, shopping, family photos, cooking, card giving, present wrapping can have us in a whirlwind of distraction. Jesus said, "Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion which will not be taken away from her." Luke 10:41-42 (KJV) Jesus knew spending time with the Father was the most important decision we could make and that is exactly what He did. While I've made a conscious effort to make listening to God a priority, I still find it a struggle to tune everything else out of my mind during my morning time. Spending quality time with my family and friends has been a real challenge as well.
"Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion which will not be taken away from her."
Luke 10: 41-42 King James Version (KJV)
Just recently, I attempted to watch my son's Pre K Thanksgiving program, without holding up my phone's camera screen between us, because I thought it would be nice to focus on him in the moment (ok, to be completely forthcoming, I only decided this minutes before he sang because the storage in my camera was full). However, the special moment lasted only seconds as his teacher looked at me and said aloud, "Come on, mom, aren't you going to record this?" during his first song. I couldn't exactly yell across the room and explain what I was trying to do, so I watched my son but was still distracted by how I must have looked like a terrible parent. I don't hold this against her or myself, but it made me aware of how hard it is to just sit still and really focus on God and the people in our lives without distractions and stress.
Aware of how hard it is to just sit still and really focus on God and the people in our lives without distractions and stress.
Some Thanksgiving gatherings are stressful for many reasons: the preparations, family discord, food allergies, unrealistic expectations, a recent death in the family, and the list continues. One thing that has really hit home with me, after my cancer surgery, is that this life is short and the people we share Thanksgiving with will not always be around and neither will we. Our time here is limited.
Our time here is limited.
Looking at these pictures remind me of the song, Empty Chairs at Empty Tables from Les Miserables. I have lots of photos of family gathered around the table from years ago, but many of those loved ones are no longer coming to the table with us. Their laughter, voices and hugs are greatly missed. But there is One who holds eternity in His hands and has a place for those who put their trust in Him. Those who spend time with Him, and have a relationship with Him.
So how do we close the door on stress and distractions this Thanksgiving? Get alone with Jesus and focus on Who He is and what He has done. Come to Him with thanksgiving and praise and make time with Him a priority.
Get alone with Jesus and focus on Who He is and what He has done. Come to Him with thanksgiving and praise and make time with Him a priority.
Intentionally and intimately draw near to Him today and everyday.
Stay humble & BOLD!
"Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path." Psalm 119:105 (KJV)
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11/30/2015 05:58:28 am
I think empty chairs are just about the hardest around the holidays as we gather 'round the table. Good post.
11/19/2016 07:07:19 am
I love the challenge to experience family gatherings and events face to face instead of through the screen of my phone. I often have the "opportunity" to do this because of my phone memory, too! I think I will be a little more intentional about it over the next week. Thanks for sharing!
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