I bought a wooden cutout sign a few years ago that creates a pine tree shape from the words “Faith, Love, Joy”. It manages to incorporate swirls, a heart, and a star all in one very Christmas-y design.
I had bought it at a hobby store, and always meant to paint it, but the more I looked at it, the more I liked the simple natural wood, and ended up hanging it against my red papered living room wall.
It fits with my “less is more” life efforts.
We really do over complicate our lives sometimes.
We grow our expectations, when really we should cultivate our gratefulness.
We stuff ourselves with substitutes for love and relationships.
We gather things when we have no more place to put them, rent storage for more, and proceed to gather more things that we soon forget we even own.
We also make our schedules too busy, our minds to worried, our plans too arrogant, and our demands too rigid.
And then we wonder why we have so little satisfaction with so much expenditure of ourselves.
It sounds as though it should be easy, but sometimes it is very hard to do.
To simplify, pare down to the things that really matter, requires letting go.
We have to let go, first. Before the reward of a more meaningful, and full life. That calls on us to trust, to have faith.
We must believe that the things we once held true, ” I need this”… “I worked hard for this”… Â “This makes me wealthy, complete, worthwhile…” Â must be released.
Dreams we held tightly to must be let go.
So that we have room for what really matters.
Our Favorite Part
One of our favorite parts of the Christmas story is the lesson of the Inn. There was room for many guests at the Inn the night that Joseph knocked at the door and inquired, but noÂ roomÂ for the long awaited Messiah.
Not that anyone was looking for him or had anything but their own comfort in mind at the time!
It speaks to us because this is how our lives go so often: we leave little time or “room” for what really matters.
We are so distracted by world events, daily business, and elbowing each other that we allow even our deepest needs to be neglected. Or the gold to be substituted with something that glitters more brightly and catches our attention… for a time.
But the element of my Christmas sign reminds me of what I really want to include in my holiday preparations:
What must I make room for, to allow those important preparations to take root? What must I let go?
Scripture for Today
And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.