It happens every year. The holiday season sneaks up on us as if we are unaware that Halloween just ended, and we find ourselves scrambling to clean our houses, bake holiday goodies, and find the perfect gifts for everyone on our lists. In the midst of our regular agendas, we add in office parties, family visits, decorating, and STRESS!
Stress over money (or lack thereof).
Stress over extended family relationships.
Stress over our overcommitted schedules.
Stress over the less than polite shoppers who will elbow us, steal the last toy on the store shelf, and then laugh as they checkout.
The holiday season is supposed to be full of good cheer and joy, but most of us experience anything but. At least we don’t until we attend a Christmas Eve church service in which we pause long enough to focus on Christ and feel His peace….and wish that feeling could have defined our holiday season.
That’s why at Mountain Lake Church we are getting a #HolidayHeadStart. Rather than allowing stress to rule our world, we’re choosing to put our minds and hearts in the right place before the craziness begins. The truth is that our own unrealistic expectations cause most of our stress.
The unrealistic expectations we put on ourselves to have the perfect tree, present the perfect meals, and give the perfect gifts.
The unrealistic expectations we put on others to behave perfectly at all times.
The unrealistic expectations we allow others to place on us to keep us with the Jones’s.
Peace is lost when our expectations are different from the expectations of Jesus. We wear ourselves out trying to create the peace we crave by meeting those unrealistic expectations rather than simply being still with God. The only gift we need this season is the gift of peace…the peace that Jesus offers when we let go of the hype and fluff of the perfect holiday season and focus instead on the perfect God we serve.
So, we’re getting a #HolidayHeadStart at Mountain Lake. We are letting go of unreal, unwise expectations in advance. We are determined to keep a peaceful heart through the holidays…..a peaceful heart that worships God, allows Him to use us to influence others, and celebrates the most beautiful time of the year.
What about you? Could you use a #HolidayHeadStart, too? Let’s not allow the holidays to fly past in a blur of regret and dysfunction. Let’s determine NOW to allow God’s peace to be our focus.
Click here to watch MLC’s weekend messages. The holidays are coming. Are you ready?