Three years ago I wrote a post on Christmas Eve, and I shared then:

Ever since December 1, I’ve tried desperately to slow down the Christmas season internally. I’ve done all I can to dig my heels in and halt the holidays so that I could enjoy them more deeply.

They’ve refused to cooperate.

It’s a holiday hope that I have each year immediately after Thanksgiving. I LOVE Christmas time. I love the lights, the tree, the food, the spirit, the weather, and especially the real meaning. Christmas is a world-wide celebration of a God that gives.

And so I begin each new December with a renewed determination to slow down Christmas. To drink deeply of each new day in during this month. I want to pause each hour, to notice things and people. I want to embrace and reveal the love of Jesus. Throughout the day.

1 Thessalonians 5:17 instructs us to “pray without ceasing.” During December, I want to celebrate without ceasing.

Three years ago, I got to Christmas Eve before I sat down to reflect and blog. This year, I’m pressing the pause button today, December 17 – a little more than a week before Christmas Day.

I clicked on my own blog archives to peruse the posts I’ve made each December. One thing I noticed – I’ve been trying to slow down Christmas for as long as I’ve been blogging. Some years are more successful than others.

You see, it’s not really about adding more time to the Christmas holidays. It’s about truly enjoying the time I’ve been given. I can’t declare victory yet in 2016. But so far… it’s been a wonderful Christmas season.

It’s all about the things I remember, the spiritual significance I’ve stumbled upon in small moments, ordinary conversations that suddenly birth vulnerable thoughts. It’s about resolving conflict with determined grace. It’s about choosing joy. I consider Christmas seasons meaningful when I look upon people and situations with eyes of faith, seeing possibilities and beauty.

Next week, I will take some intentional downtime, and I plan to blog, drink coffee, enjoy our fireplace and wrestle my heart into even more slowness. That’s the plan, anyway. In the meantime, let me share one of the best Christmas videos I’ve seen so far this year. I hope it brings a smile to your face.. and that you slow down long enough to watch it.

 

On this day...