There is a commercial this year that shows four kids, probably ages 2-5, sitting on a couch with headlamps on. They bubble over with excitement and anticipation as their headlights illuminate their point of interest: the fireplace. They are waiting for Santa to show up.
Christmas is about anticipation. Some traditions celebrate advent – waiting for Jesus to show up. Much of the Western world exudes a buckets of energy with the hustle and bustle of the season.
My studies lately have taken me down a reflective path, looking at the spiritual disciplines again. I’ve listened to The Power of Pause, by Terry Hershey (I strongly recommend the audio version), and reading With by Skye Jethani (an incredible, transformational book), and Sacred Rhythms by Ruth Haley Barton (more of a traditional look at the spiritual disciplines).
It occurs to me that when Jesus said we should become like little children (Matthew 18), we might consider the kids on the couch. You see, they weren’t hustling to create moments of joy. They were sitting still, waiting to receive. Their joy was in the waiting.
Their joy was in the waiting.
Now I know that there is a need for the hustle. Someone has to shop for the gifts, wrap them, make the candy and cookies, practice for the Christmas concert, decorate the tree. At the same time, I wonder what waiting with anticipation might look like in this very grownup world. Might we look for Jesus’ presence as we bake, or keep an eye out for His delights as we shop? What if we paused to enjoy the ambiance of the Christmas decorations and smells, and took those moments to listen for Jesus’ presence?
How would your Christmas season change if you entered each day with a headlamp on your head, looking and waiting for Jesus to show up and shower you with delights?