When I get to the Christmas season, I begin to do some comparison shopping. No, I don’t mean the kind where I’m looking to see if Target has a better sale than Walmart. I mean, the kind where I look to see … how is everyone else handling things?
How are my relatives, friends, co-workers handling the pressures of the season? I want to compare myself and see if I’m measuring up. Am I tired out? Am I critical and cranky? Am I accomplishing all that I need to do?
The answer to those are as follows: yes, yes, no.
I’m not getting it all done and I have found that I often have a bad attitude to accompany the day-in-day-out drama.
This morning I headed over to the little church. I walked in the door to feel the warm sunshine bursting through the windows. The temperature gauge registered -5 degrees below zero, but inside, well, something was different. There was a welcoming warmth that I took time to enjoy.
The new furnace hummed a quiet tune, while the Christmas trimmings glistened in the rays of sunlight. I looked at the accomplishments of photos from the past … the pastors from 1897 to the 1980s. I looked at pictures of their families, their farms, the parsonage, and I relished in the fact that whatever they’d accomplished for God, I knew it was great work!
Over the past three weeks, I have played piano at nursing homes, I have been a main session speaker for events, produced my radio show and magazine, have done many things, and each time I get finished I have a feeling of satisfaction. Maybe I didn’t get everything done perfectly. Maybe I didn’t check everything off of my list. But for today, here in the warmth of the little church that Farmer Dean and I bought for $1.00 four years ago, I feel a peace. I feel a peace that scripture talks about … one that passes all understanding. A peace that envelopes my spirit and says, “You’re doing just fine. Keep up the good work.”
Christmas isn’t about the presents and cookies. It’s not even about the events and sing-a-longs. It’s simply about the Savior. He’s come to bring salvation and peace into a world in turmoil. Into a soul in turmoil. And as He sends the light through the glorious old windows of the church, I see Him there … in the rays of sun, in the warmth through the bitter cold, and in my heart. Welcome Christ Child! Bring your peace.