Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Bringing In The Sheaves"1 (Lyrics)
Weeks ago, I stripped the house of all that was not Christmas. Then as these things disappeared, I replaced them with Christmas! I cleared my china cabinet of dishes that were not Christmas; my curio cabinet became a place for snowmen. Furniture was moved so that Christmas trees could go in their place, and Christmas pictures replaced regular ones. All that had been there before paled in contrast to the festiveness that Christmas brings!
So many times, I need to clear my mind and soul of the things that can clutter my thinking about Christ! I need to shut off the media that declares that all things about Christ are offensive. I need to rid myself of all that does not glorify Him. I need to prioritize my life, sometimes trading good things for the better things of God. I need to clear myself of all that is not Christ! I need a new infilling of the Holy Spirit!
In a few short days, I will begin the task of getting back to normal. I will probably leave the trees up for another week, but the twinkling lights don't mean as much. The glow is gone because that one big day has passed. We will dig out the directions to our new gadgets and try them out to see if they work. The diets will start, fitness programs will begin, and new bills will start coming in the mail. Christmas cards with their greetings will be read again and put away.
But as the Christmas dishes go back into boxes and Christmas trees find a place on the shelf in my basement, I pray that the Babe of Christmas never leaves my heart. May I not box Him up with the Christmas ornaments, festive figurines, or beautiful nativity sets. As I fill my house with the everyday things, I pray that the Christ of Christmas will never leave my soul. I want to bring my mind back often to the Son of God Who chose to come to earth as an innocent Baby and die on the cross to save us from our sins.
May the wonder of Christmas permeate our beings so much that Christ and only Christ can be seen in us all year round!
Prayer: Lord, we thank You for this beautiful season of the year when families come together to celebrate. But more than that, we thank You that You bring a daily celebration into our hearts — a celebration of Your love, Your salvation, and Your hope. We thank You that though images of You lying in a manger will find their places in boxes, we will find You every morning in the pages of our Bibles and as we pray. We praise You, Lord, for Your presence in our lives all year — and not just on that one big day! Amen.