Keeping Jesus first this holiday season is challenging, but even He had a method of keeping God first among all the chaos of Passover!
Though our concerns don’t consist of sacrificing our lives like He did (literally), they do in the simple and obvious temptations. Like there being too much food, spending, and events that leave us exhausted, broke, and several pounds heavier come January.
But surely we have to have certain foods prepared and partake in certain traditions in order to fully take in the season, right? And how are we to avoid those delicious Christmas cookies and those amazing red tag deals that come only at this time of year?
Struggling For Balance
For some, this season may be a reminder of loved ones no longer here or bad memories that come to haunt. And there’s always the thought of another year coming to a close, wondering if this year was a good one or wanting to start fresh with a new one.
Beyond these common issues to please, indulge, and remain joyous, Christians experience the added struggle of maintaining balance between Claus and Christ in and outside of the home. So is there a way to fully enjoy the festivities without compromising our minds, bodies, and dedication to Christ?
Is there a method to avoid the madness or sadness, remaining peaceful and joyful as God intended? Our answer is simply found in Jesus’ example during the holiday of Passover.
During holidays, we are often surrounded by too many people and too much activity that we have difficulty even hearing our own thoughts. So how are we supposed to hear God this way and tap into His wisdom and guidance?
Go for a walk, sit outside, or retreat to a bedroom for some down time. Get away from the noise so that you can spend some time listening to His still, small voice.
Jesus prayed for what plagued Him the most. What’s bothering you this season and what could you ask for to help relieve your suffering or stress?
Consider praying to remain within your eating, spending, and social limitations. Or pray for those less fortunate and ask what God wants you to do to make the season brighter for them.
From Scripture, we know Jesus is captured to be crucified shortly after He prays. But the important takeaway for us is that God gives something significant to Jesus.
Now an angel from heaven appeared to Him, strengthening Him. (Luke 22:43)
Jesus received strength from God during His solitude and prayer. This wasn’t the first time He applied this method and received God’s help; it happened throughout Scripture.
The example He has given us is a living one of how Christians should be at all times, no matter the season or reason. So we should seek isolation and prayer, inviting God to help us.
Following His Example
By doing so, we are better able to make the right decisions for ourselves and our families. Because God doesn’t want our traditions to rule over us!
Then the Lord said, “Because this people draw near with their words and honor Me with their lip service, but they remove their hearts far from Me, and their reverence for Me consists of tradition learned by rote, (Isaiah 29:13).
By rote, we allow holiday traditions to take precedence over God. By rote, we attend Christmas service, either to check it off our lists or to make up for not attending service all year.
But God doesn’t want this; He doesn’t want us to fall victim to stress, over-indulgence, and traditions. So remember to follow Jesus’ simple method of solitude and prayer, especially during this season, for your benefit and the benefit of everyone around you.
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Post Question: What stresses you out the most during the holiday season? Family? Food? Finances? Comment below!