Monday, November 28, 2011

The Journey to Christmas.

Sunday morning we woke up early to go to Music and the Spoken Word.
I was so touched by the beautiful music as the choir sang different arrangements of Christmas carols.
We sat right in front so we could see the orchestra play their instruments with such feeling and passion.

I was also so touched by the message that was shared, and found it to be true to not only Christmas, but my life.
How often I forget to live in the moment and recognize those things that are preparing me for what lies ahead.
It was such an inspiring program and I am so glad we were able to go.

"The month of December is a time of joyful anticipation. The sights, sounds, and smells of the season evoke feelings of excitement and wonder. For generations, children—and grown-ups—have used advent calendars and paper chains to count down the days. But does our focus ever become so fixed on the future that we forget to enjoy the journey to Christmas?

This year, instead of just looking forward, let’s also take pleasure in the preparations: in the little, less spectacular moments along the way, even in the spontaneous joys that may, at first, seem like interruptions to our bigger plans. In order to recognize those moments for what they could be, it sometimes helps to slow things down a bit. We may need to shop less and savor more. We might have to dim the bright lights in order to see the stars in the heavens, but if we look, we will find them.

Often it takes a child to redirect our focus. Think of how much children enjoy the present moments, the preparations, and not just the finished products. When helping to decorate the home, wrap presents, or bake Christmas treats, they usually make more of a mess than we would; they might not do it just right, but they also usually enjoy the moment more than we do! Their enthusiasm can be contagious.

A three-year-old girl, wholeheartedly living in the present, exclaimed: "It’s not tomorrow! It’s not today! It’s to-now!” 
When was the last time you felt "to-now”?
Yes, we are busy. But the days leading to Christmas are not just to be endured. In fact, perhaps they offer more of what the season is really about. The promise of Christmas is everywhere to behold. It’s not saved for Christmas morning. If we have eyes to see, ears to hear, and hearts to open, we truly can enjoy the journey to Christmas."

- Lloyd D. Newell

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