As I am writing this it is the eve of Christmas Eve 2021. The house is very quiet around me. I live alone and work at home. I joke that I am an introvert. Maybe I am, maybe I’m not. I do enjoy being home alone and working from home. But, sometimes I miss people.
Today, seems strange to me. Because of sick family members, I am not sure what our Christmas is going to look like this year. Some plans are up in the air, some are still on, but who will be coming is still unknown. By the time you are reading this Christmas will be past.
In the midst of this uncertainty I’m not sad. I’ve learned that joy comes from within and I’ve learned to shift my focus so that I dwell on the source of that joy rather than on earthly circumstances. I know I can’t dwell upon that uncertainty because it will only cause sadness.
It has taken practice through the years to learn to do that. I’ve learned to stop myself and shift my thinking - on purpose. Maybe that is why I find peace in being home alone. I am truly never alone, but feel God’s presence here with me. So, I focus on Him.
However, sadness does sometimes come when I least expect it. When it does, I take a deep breath and shift my thinking once again to thoughts of gratitude. I have so very much to be grateful for! When I do that, shift my focus, I am overrun with thankfulness, so sadness never gains a foothold.
Then, I think about so many others who have lost so much the last couple of years. I think about how our world has changed and how so many have suffer great angst and fear in the uncertainty. My heart rests on them.
In the wealth of peace and joy that I experience, my heart is compassionate to so many who are hurting. My prayer is that they would find peace in Him, for He loves them dearly.
Often when we hurt or suffer loss and experience the pain that comes with it, we attribute it to God causing that particular instance in our lives. Or, some may even wonder why, if God is God, did He not stop whatever happened.
Then, doubt sets in and even though we give lip service to God, in our hearts we wonder if we are truly and completely loved by Him. We may even wonder what the true definition of love really is.
If God loves us and this is how our lives play out, does love include this type of deep pain? Many then find themselves slowly turning away from the very one who is true and genuine love.
We cannot allow natural pain on this earth to taint our view of the purity of God’s love. Because it is pure and lovely and grand on every scale. Just because we experience pain and loss, does not mean there is not pure love in the balance. But, we must turn to it and allow ourselves to be embraced by it.
I don’t know anyone who would say that we doubt God can do miracles, but many seem to have lost the wonderment of expectation. Prayers often seem routine and perfunctory and void of hope that they will truly be answered.
What this boils down to is that we question God’s love for us. Have we done all the right things? Have we followed all the rules? Have we been sinful? All of these questions focus on us and our behavior. It isn’t about us. It is about Him, and His love is truly unconditional and will never fail.
If you’ve used the fact that God will always love you unconditionally as an excuse to live a life you KNOW would be displeasing to Him, then you have not really experienced the true depths of His love. Once you do, you will run to it and no other source. Nothing else will satisfy, and all the other things we ran to no longer seem attractive.
And that is the key. Stop trying to be perfect, He never asked that of you. Stop trying to follow all the rules, He never asked that of you. Stop trying to not sin, He never asked that of you. What He has asked is that you run to Him. Embrace Him. Let Him love you.
Once you do that, you will be truly transformed. All the things you were working so hard to do and not do will naturally fall away or be added as they should be. You begin again to believe He will do a miracle for you. Because LOVE DOES MIRACLES.
So, today as I sit here and write on the eve of Christmas Eve, I wish, hope, and pray for you to learn to let Him love you fully. Turn to Him with no shame or regret. In His deep love abides hope, and faith. Rest there today.
I want to encourage you to leave me any comments below. They are so encouraging and motivating to me.
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