Monday, December 19, 2011

Watch Your Attitude

Star ornament that was a gift from my grandparents  when I was a wee little thing.  
I am a bundle of emotions as I begin this week leading up to Christmas.  Yesterday was a wonderful day of worship, Bible teaching, music, and friends.  I ended my weekend light-hearted and filled with peace and joy.  This morning as I think about what I need to do to get ready for our family Christmas tomorrow a sense of melancholy descends.

I love history.  Perhaps that is why I tend to spend time dwelling on my own, especially at this time of year. But it is just that "dwelling on" that makes me a bit blue.  All around me are remembrances of Christmases past.  

The Santa that always sat under my family's Christmas tree when I was growing up and continues that tradition  in my home, surrounded by bears that were gifts from my brother who is now home with the Lord.

 Remembrances of those I have loved so deeply who are no longer with me.  Thoughts about how my life is changing as my little boys have grown up.  Our own Christmases are starting to look very different as we have to start sharing our sons with others.  Realizing that next year will change it all even more as one son looks towards moving to another state.  So many good memories.  But life marches on.
Stocking I made for my dad one Christmas- it serves to remind me now of days spent on his lap in his big old recliner in the living room by the fire.

Stocking I made for my mom one Christmas-  brings back sweet memories of times spent with her baking cookies.

I have a prayer notebook that I write in as I do my quiet times.  The very last section is labeled "Listen."  After my time of purposefully praising, confessing,  requesting, and thanking God, I try to quiet my mind and then write down whatever thought/s come to mind.  This morning the first thing I wrote down almost immediately upon turning to this section of my notebook was, "Watch your attitude."  It is not even lunch time yet and I can say that I believe this was indeed a warning from the Lord for me today.

I live in a house where the university schedule is our way of life and today marks the first day of Christmas break.  My husband turned in his grades this morning.  The house no longer belongs just to me during the days. One forgets at this stage in life how difficult it can be to fit in any kind of quiet time.  I am no longer used to the distractions.  Sitting at the kitchen enjoying my much needed time with the Lord I am asked by one if I would like to go for a little walk around the yard with he the dogs.  Later I am interrupted by one who needs to know how to hard boil eggs.  Soon I find myself dealing with timers going off and a forgotten pan of eggs that needs to be dealt with.  (I've not made it to my "listen" section yet.)
Sitting at the computer trying to get my thoughts in writing I am approached about the need to head to the post office to get a package in the mail.  I was not a particularly happy camper about doing it right then.  It was not until we were on the way home from said post office that the line I wrote in my notebook popped into my head, "watch your attitude" and I thought to myself, "Lord, you know me so well.  You knew the frustrations I would face today and even before they came You were already encouraging me to better handle them than I have in the past."  He knew, especially with my melancholy mood, how important it is going to be for me today to watch my attitude.

As I posted the photo I took of the star ornament at the top of this post, my mind went back to a surprise that awaited me in Numbers this morning.  "I see him, but not now;  I behold him, but not near; a star shall come forth from Jacob, a scepter shall rise from Israel." (Numbers 24:17, NASB)  And I remembered an earlier musing of mine: A Different Focus This Advent.  I love that Christmas is a celebration of the fulfillment of God's promise to us to send a Savior.  To send His Son that we might have life and have it abundantly.  I love that it also reminds me that He is faithful to do all that He said He would do-- and the story is not over yet.  And it strikes me as I write this that my attitude adjustment applies to my Christmas celebrations too.

Grace, Peace, and Mercy,

 I would love to hear about your own journeys. Feel free to share what God is teaching you, as well as your thoughts on my musings. May we grow in wisdom and understanding together..


GrammaGrits said...

How did you know what I needed for today especially? I don't have lots of busyness going on like most others, but I'm sad. Miss my dad a lot - he loved Christmas and he's been gone for 30 years now. Why does it seem sadness pervades the joy that should come at the celebration of Christ's birth? Yet He was born to die . . .

Deb said...

Well, I did not know dear friend, but Someone did.
I suppose this grief will never really go away, which Ken keeps reminding me is a tribute to how important they were to me. Praying for you always.

Anonymous said...

Deb, somewhere you asked about interest in a small group getting together....or did I dream it. I have had this on my heart that I would love to get together with you sometime, perhaps on a regular basis. If you find this to be a possiblilty, please contact me.

Deb said...

Charlsa- yes I posted on the subject yesterday on my facebook page. I would love to do regular get-togethers with you too!