Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Waiting Gratefully For Christmas

"What God has given me has always pleased me, even the things which appear to me less good and less beautiful than those which others had."
—St. Therese


Dear readers:
In these waning days of Advent, it is hard to be patient. Children especially can't wait until Christmas comes. The excitement has been building since before Halloween (which distresses me...way too early!) and sometimes it seems like Christmas will never come.

But it will come, and it always does.

In these last days of Advent, while we wait and hope and wonder, let's continue to use this time to think about how we long for the arrival of Baby Jesus on Christmas Day, how we anticipate him entering our hearts then, and how grateful we are for the wait.

It is difficult. There are presents to buy, plans to make, cookies to bake. Grandma's special butter-stained recipe cards from so long ago to go through. Decorations to hang throughout the house. These are all good things, certainly. But they pale in comparison to the true waiting. Think about how blessed we are to have this Advent time to prepare our hearts for His coming. The peaceful longing we have—not for presents in pretty paper under the tree, but for a Savior, the Prince of Peace, the King of Kings—is good for our souls: the waiting, praying, and preparing for such a Holy Gift.

Dear God: We're waiting for you. It is hard to wait, but You know this, because You know everything. We are grateful for the waiting. When Christmas Day comes, and the wait is over, and we open our presents, let us remember what St. Therese said so long ago (above). Let us be pleased with and grateful for what You have given us in Your generosity. There will many who will receive more than us this Christmas, and so, so many more who will receive much less. Let us remember this as we think of the real reason for this day. It is Jesus' birthday, not ours. Please help us to remember that the very best present we could ever receive is You. And the very best present we could give to this Little Baby Boy is peace and love to those around us, and our love and gratitude to You. Amen.

I wish you all a blessed Christmas, dear readers. Let us keep God in our hearts always!
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