Saturday, December 24, 2011

treasure . . . ponder . . .

According to the clock on my computer it's been December 24 for 2 minutes right now. Christmas Eve. How did it get here so fast? Seriously. I'm sure that it was just the beginning of December a couple days ago! Things in life seem to be going by so fast lately.
When I stop to think and realize how fast time seems to be going, I find myself starting to wonder if this is how life is really supposed to lived? I mean, did Jesus come to earth as the promised and long-awaited Messiah for us to just try to fit Him into the busy-ness of our lives? Is life meant to be so busy we feel like days or weeks or months have just disappeared?

I think we miss a lot when we just allow life to pass us by. But sometimes that seems like all we can do as we try to keep up. And then when we do stop for a moment, we realize that far too much time has passed us by and we don't even remember how we used that time.

I wonder what things would be like if we didn't allow time to pass by as we were busily running from one thing to the next. What if we took time to stop and savour every conversation with someone? Every sunset or sunrise? Every night sky? Every moment of beauty we see? What would life be like then? I don't think we would so often stop to find that days just seem to have disappeared.

It makes me wonder if Jesus' birth was one of those moments for Mary and Joseph, for the shepherds, for the wise men. One of those moments where they did stop to take it all in. It was a world-changing event. God come to earth in human form. Scripture tells us that "Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart." (Luke 2:19, NIV). It seems to me like Mary was taking the time to really stop and notice all that was going on, rather than just allowing things to slip by.

It's something that has come up on more than one occasion for me in this last month. Those words from Luke 2:19. Maybe there's a reason. Maybe I need to stop and do the same thing as Mary did. Maybe, just maybe, I need to stop and treasure the moments with family and friends, the beauty that surrounds me where I live, the incredible gift from God that we're celebrating during this season.

After all, I have much reason to thank God for all He has given me:
-for sisters and brother-in-laws that are all here to spend time with
-for parents who love all their kids
-for laughter with family gathered around the table
-for a job that I love most days
-for a church that I can be involved in and a church family that cares
-for friends that make my life better just by being a part of it
-for a good place to live and more than enough food
-for freedom to worship and follow God
-for a God that loves us all enough that He would stop at nothing to reconcile us to Himself
-for the gorgeous part of the world God has provided for me to live in
There's so much more I could add. And so much of that I don't even notice in a day. The moments that could be treasured are passed by without a second thought.

But, the good thing is that can change. I can choose to treasure and ponder those things. And so can you. We may not always get it. We may get caught up in the busy-ness of life from time to time. We may take things for granted sometimes. But, when we find ourselves doing so, we can choose again to treasure those moments, to ponder the significance of them. We don't have to stay caught up in a life that passes us by without us knowing it. We can choose a different way.

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