OK. What's next? For the last month we ran around getting ready for Christmas. We hung the lights, set up the tree, sent out the cards and went shopping.
We wrapped, delivered and finally opened all the presents. We gathered with family and friends at parties. We ate too much and celebrated at a church service or two. It seemed like Christmas would never get here. Then it did. Now it's over. So, back to my question. What is next?
Why is it that we tend to rush from one thing to the next? We are always making plans for the next holiday, the next family event, the next vacation. It is almost as if we want the days to melt away. We can't wait to finish what we are doing so we can get on to the next thing. That's no way to live life. I woke up this morning exhausted. Maybe you did too?
Well here is the good news: We can do something about it. A new year is dawning and it offers us the opportunity to make a fresh start. I'm not talking about making resolutions. They don't last.
Many of us resolve to lose weight, exercise more, read the Bible and get back to worshiping regularly. Before we know it half the year has gone by and we are back to our old habits. What I am suggesting today is a change in your approach to life itself.
I'd like to invite you to join me as I try to slow down and make an effort to enjoy each day. Let's stop rushing through life. Let's embrace the journey itself. In Psalm 118:24 we read, "This is the day the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it." In Psalm 90 we read, "Teach us to number our days aright that we may gain a heart of wisdom."
Both of these Psalms remind us that to live life well, we need to greet each day as a gift from the giver of life itself. God is waiting for us to take his hand and explore the beauty that he hides in each new morning. When was the last time you got up to watch a sunrise? How long has it been since you looked at a flower and marveled at its texture and color? Can you remember the last time you tried to catch a snowflake on your tongue?
As I sat watching the children in our extended family open presents on Christmas Day, I couldn't help but think how much they enjoyed every minute of that experience. Their eyes were wide with glee as they held up each gift. They reached out to show it to their parents. They passed the gift around to anyone who cared to see it. They were living in that moment.
Page 2 of 2 - I want that joy for you and me. Let's make it a point to stop racing toward the next big thing as we enter the new year. Let's work on unwrapping each day as if it was a gift from God. If we are successful, it will prove to be the best year of our lives. We will be renewed and the journey will become a blessing in itself.
Happy New Year. God bless. See you in church.