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christmas shopping 750pb

Enough shopping days to Christmas?

Ruth Lilley is looking forward to Christmas, but finds herself wondering whether her festive preparations are sufficiently advanced!

I love this time of year; the nights draw in and it becomes crisper and colder. I love the brightness of the sun against the blue skies – when it is not raining! The bonfire smells and the unexpected firework displays which suddenly appear as you look out the window.
There is also the reminder of Christmas everywhere you go. It feels like each year this gets earlier and earlier. This year I discovered Christmas cards in a shop in September! I love Christmas, yet the super early advertising, this year, has left me sometimes feeling overwhelmed.
It’s only a fleeting feeling and it comes when I am prompted by all these reminders of Christmas. I feel like I haven’t been organised enough and that I should be arranging this and getting that. A few weeks ago, I was passing an advert in a shop window reminding me to order my Christmas food. All of a sudden it felt like I had forgotten to do something really important. I told myself not to be so silly as it was only half-way through October, why would I, why should I be thinking about Christmas food?
However, it did also make me think about how easy it is to get carried away with all that goes on around me. I can be influenced by what I see and before I know it, I am feeling overwhelmed because I am no longer standing on my true foundation.
In the Bible, we read of Jesus talking to those around Him, telling them that God cares about even the smallest detail of our lives. He reminds them that God knows and provides all that we need, therefore we need not worry about tomorrow. (Matthew 6:25-34).
I believe this is what I should centre my thoughts on, knowing I am loved by the God who provides, the God who cares. It is all about today; a brand-new day, complete with new blessings of love, grace and mercy. Standing on the truth that God is always faithful and unchanging.
Instead of being swept away by the many reminders of what I have not done, I shall consider what can be done. God reminded me recently that it is about today. I love that, because it simplifies things so much. Those overwhelming feelings can be met head on with truth. Truth that tells me, today, I am loved by my Heavenly Father and in His strength and by the power of His Spirit, I can do today.
I can choose love, kindness, forgiveness, patience and gentleness. I can do my best to share Jesus with those around me. When I get it wrong or my mind wanders off in the wrong direction, I can determine to shake it off, re-focus and get back on track with what is true.
How wonderful, that as each new day comes, it is a brand-new day. A day that can be given my full attention because God has got tomorrow covered.

The image above is courtesy of Andi Graf from Pixabay.com



ruth starkings 150CFRuth Lilley is the family worker at Meadow Way Chapel in Hellesdon. She also enjoys writing, and writes a regular blog called ‘With Every Sun Comes A New Day.’

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