While grocery shopping this weekend, I saw a woman with four little girls. The little girls were chatty and full of energy, yet the woman was quiet and her face was full of frustration and fatigue. As I walked out of the store, I saw her sitting and immediately said a prayer for her. I wondered how many times I looked like that woman without being aware of it - you never know who is watching you.
The holiday season is here and there will be more than a few faces of frustration and fatigue. I refuse to be one of them. The holidays are supposed to be full of joy, peace, and love - at least that's what the greeting cards say! It's so easy to get caught in the hype of shopping, grumbling, and having no peace of mind. One good thing about getting caught in the hype is the stress. The stress can be used to remind me to place my focus back on the joyous reason for the season. The stress can remind me to check myself, my spending, and event planning. The stress can remind me of what's important. I will remember that I create my own stress. If I become frustrated and fatigued, it's my fault. I don't want to be Santa Claus making my list and checking it twice. I want to be like a child full of joy and anticipation for the big celebration instead of being full of anxiety and dreading the occasion. Yuck! It takes being in tune to God's Spirit to create an atmosphere of joy, peace, and love in the home - anytime of the year. The atmosphere in my home is a reflection of God's peace in my heart. I want His peace not only during the holiday season, but every day of the year. The hype will pass away, but the joyous reason for the season lingers throughout the year.