Plug Into Sacred Moments to Find Christmas Rest
by Nancy Booth, recovering hurrier, listener extraordinaire, lover of God and of children, looking for a restful Christmas
You have a to do list that is never ending. The Christmas season is packed with a million wonderful things and yet it’s lost its luster for you. You begin to dread getting up in the morning. What is going on in your mind, heart and body? Christmas is coming and you want to feel all joyous, happy and hopeful. Instead you feel all worried, grumpy and exhausted. How can you find any time to plug into a Christmas rest that restores?
What is Christmas rest?
When I think about Christmas rest, I think about letting go of all the hustle and bustle and letting God direct my steps, which is easier said than done. I am so good at making lists, scurrying around to get things done and making sure that everyone is happy and glad. However, I am slowing learning that “making” everyone happy and glad for the holiday season is not necessarily my job. In the past, when I have attempted to do that, I am usually the one who gets mad and grumpy.
To practice Christmas rest, plugging into sacred moments through simplicity, silence and solitude are ways I have found helpful. These practices provide the time needed to restore my mind, heart and body so that I can feel joyous, happy and hopeful, no matter my circumstances. How do I give myself permission to regularly plug into simplicity, silence and solitude?
Inherent in the word simplicity is simple. The act of simplicity helps me determine what is essential in my life. How do you enjoy the holiday season and make it simple for yourself and your family? How much of the “traditions” can you eliminate and still make it meaningful?
For example, this year, our family decided that regifting or shopping at a thrift store were viable options for gifting as well as giving each other short gift lists of practical items. This simple choice has taken a huge pressure off our budget as well as lessening time in the stores. It also means we’ll have more time for games and memory-making when we get together as a family because there won’t be so many gifts to open.
Christmas time can be noisy, with lots of activities, people, places via for your attention. Taking time to sit with God in silence can totally refresh your mind, body and soul. Silence is a chance for your brain to regenerate, reduce stress and tension and be reflective.
It also gives you a chance to listen to God and ask Him what your priorities for the day might be so you don’t have so much to decide every day. Even 10 minutes can be very restorative. I have found that silence, while challenging, is refreshing my mind, body and soul.
Even in a busy household, you can enjoy solitude. It might be in the shower, if necessary. However brief, that time of solitude — a time for yourself to recharge without any demands on you is a time of rest.
By filling your own mind, body and soul with quiet and care for yourself, you are then able to give out of a full cup. Rest in solitude restores. This solitude time is as important as work times. Giving yourself permission to just be held by God will bless your mind, body and soul.
What about you?
How will you create your sacred Christmas rest? What can you make more simple in your life and your family’s life? What would silence with God look like? Where can you go for some solitude?
As you read these questions, what resistance is bubbling up? Acknowledge the resistance and take that to God as well so that you can find the restorative Christmas rest you desire this season.
In this world of darkness and angst, I am grateful for Christmas rest and sacred moments with God. He lights our paths and restores hope and joy in our families, regardless of our circumstances.
It’s not easy but it is possible and the rewards are great. Get my list of 10 Ways to Find Sacred Moments This Christmas for additional ways to find sacred, restorative moments as you seek the Christmas rest. These sacred moments can provide the hope and balance you want for you and your family. He wants to bless all of us as we slow down to listen and rest.
Nancy Booth is a certified spiritual director and author. She helps you shed hurry, worry and disconnect as you seek to hear God’s voice in everyday living. She creates safe spaces for you to discover God in your own messy, busy life. She writes encouragement and inspiration for you on her weekly blog at My Sacred Moments.