Let Your Heart Be Light

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"Martha, Martha," the Lord answered, "you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her." - Luke 10:41-42

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, Martin, Blaine, 1944

Have yourself a merry little Christmas, let your heart be light
Next year all our troubles will be out of sight
Have yourself a merry little Christmas, make the yuletide gay
Next year all our troubles will be miles away.

Christmas can seem like a rat race at times. There is all of the hectic last minute shopping at crowded malls while struggling to find the perfect gift for someone, the decorating the house (including checking every single bulb on the strand of lights to find the one at the very end that shorted out the rest), wrapping present after present after present, or preparing for the family to come and take over the house for the day. It is easy to get lost in the busyness of Christmas, and to miss the things that are really important.

We see this happen in the book of Luke, when Jesus goes to eat in the home of two sisters, Mary and Martha. Martha spends her time running around cooking, serving dinner, and cleaning, which are very good things, but are busy things. Meanwhile, Mary sits in the company of Jesus. When Martha asks Jesus to tell her to work too, He tells her that, “Mary has chosen what is better.”

Jesus is trying to tell us to live in the moment. It is great that you are willing to be like Martha, and make sure that all of the popcorn is strung up, but it is not worth missing the opportunity to have a real conversation with a family member you don’t see often, or when your child’s face lights up because Santa indeed got that letter and delivered exactly what they asked for. It is not about all that we have to do, the list of things we have check off, but it is all about the moment.

This year, don’t miss out on what is better. Take the opportunity to enjoy the time you have with friends and family. Take time not to worry about the things you have to do, but to enjoy the people you get to be with. Be present where you are, because that is what is better, and have yourself a merry little Christmas.

What are some things you need to take off the list to make yourself become more like Mary?

What are the better things that you choose to be a part of this Christmas?

Jesus. Every year. I think that this will be the year that I have a reflective Advent. I try so hard, but all around me are the signs rushing me to Christmas and some kind of celebration that equates spending with love. I need Your help. I want to slow down. This year, more than ever, I need to slow down. I am longing for hope in the darkness. Jesus, this year, help me to have that longing. Help me to feel it in my heart and be aware of the hunger and thirst in my soul. Deep down, I know there is something missing in my life, but I can’t quite reach for it. I can’t get what is missing. I know it is about You, Jesus. You are not missing from my life, but I might be missing the awareness of all of the places You are present there. Be with me; guide me in these weeks to what You want to show me this Advent. Help me to be vulnerable enough to ask You to lead me to the place of my own weakness, the very place where I will find you the most deeply embedded in my heart, loving me without limits. Amen.
Dec 6 2018