December’s days felt like the sands of an hourglass; unstoppable, fast, pushing one to the next. There were moments of wonder waiting for the Christ child. Small snippets of peace that reigned in the midst of traditions, concerts, baking, the to do lists. But if were really being honest here sometimes the ideals and planning that we mama’s do for these days of Christmas can leave us with an hourglass full of too many busy, depleting days and we reign in the new year feeling a little fragile to bear up under January’s expectations.
Don’t get me wrong I love Christmas. The turning to remember the God of the universe actually coming to be “God with us” in the still moments, when I could ponder the sheer amazingness of that reality and the true essence of the season; it’s this humbling truth that made sense of those full days.
Unfortunately I think I came to the end of December realizing there were too many days right full and not enough days of being still and just knowing in my marrow that He is God.
And now the hourglass is supposed to be flipped and the sands of time race against one another to live out our New Year’s resolutions. I’m thinking my hour glass needs to rest on its side to allow time to stand still and my mind to be clear to receive what this new year will be, could be. Not of my own making but through God’s making and through the Spirits moving.
The magazine at the check out, it promises many things to help me get a handle on my new year.
“A year of organized living, Life skills, strategies, and advice to make every day easier.”
The pressure begins. It begs the question that I must not be organized enough. That we all need to get more of a handle on our lives, our days. It’s enticing. The allure of making everyday easier…
As mamas don’t we know that our days probably would be easier with a little organization? That there are places in our lives that could use a little, or big overhaul? Of course it’s good to take inventory, to take this opportunity to ask ourselves some good questions, some hard questions. But I’m pretty sure the answers aren’t found by “pulling up our boot straps” or “putting on our big girl panties” and getting after it alone.
The answers to our new year’s resolutions lie in the hope of the manger and the cross. That God came to be WITH US. And even though he beat death on the cross and sits at the right hand of the creator God he is still with us and left an advocate for us, that of the Holy Spirit. This, isn’t this how we remain in him? This, isn’t this how anything good comes through us into our lives? Any change that we want to see, any new beginning that is to be, any transformation that is to take place?
“I am the true grapevine, and my father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more. You have already been pruned and purified by the message I have given you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me. Yes I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:1-5
As we remain in him, with him, seeking him, He is making all things new in us. He gives us the courage to step forward out of the old into the new. The courage to face “that thing” that has been plaguing us; the thing that year after year seams to always be our new years resolution and somehow has yet to find resolution; the things that bring us to our knees in tears and weigh us down like monkeys on our backs.
He has an answer for all of these “things”.
He may ask us to fight for them with everything we are but we will not win the battle on our own. It will be won his way, and in his time. He will have all the glory and we will have the freedom that is ours because he longs to bring about much fruit in our lives.
Mamas, as you look ahead to this New Year, let’s not let the pressure of our resolutions sever us from the vine of the true source of pruning. He longs to make good on our dreams. He longs to empower us by His spirit.
As we turn our hourglasses over to this New Year may we beg HIM for the answers to our new year’s resolutions. Knowing he loves us so much the way we are and yet won’t leave us there if we long for more.