Saturday, December 16, 2017

Manageable Bites


Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:34


The students in my classroom are labeled as “Intellectually disabled.” That is true. All of them struggle in some areas, each one has different strengths and different limits. One thing that is often common in our learning community is the tendency to eat too quickly. It is not unusual to see a child take a “bite” that is actually half a hamburger or attempt to put an entire dinner roll in his mouth at once. Shoveling all things spoonable, potatoes, mac and cheese, fruit is pretty ordinary for some of my kiddos. Thus there has to be a constant reminder, “slow down, sweetie, take manageable bites.”

          That term, manageable bites, came to me this morning during my quiet time with the Lord. I was looking around my office, overwhelmed by the chaos that is my Christmas prep. Paper, tape, bags, cards, things wrapped and yet to be wrapped are all over my space. I had to unearth my chair to even begin to spend time with God. The state of my space threatened my serenity, my ability to focus on what Abba had to say this morning. I drew in a deep breath and told myself, “manageable bites.” I was in the time I set aside to be with my Savior. Wrapping, cooking, baking and the phone calls/texts to firm up plans would have to wait.  That is when God showed me, reminded me, that I am not the only one who is being tempted to take on too much at once. “Tell them.”

          So here I am to remind you that this is the day that the Lord has made! We should rejoice and be glad in it. (Psalm 118:24) Things will get done, or they won’t but more likely, most likely, they will if we remember what is important. Mary chose what was better and it was not taken from her. She chose to sit at Jesus’ feet and listen to Him, to drink in His peace and strength.  (Luke 10:42) Mary had her priorities straight. She remained calmly at the feet of her Savior and when He was finished I’m guessing she got everything done without stress.

          Follow Mary’s example. Live in this moment without angst about the moments to come. Take manageable bites and have a joy filled day.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

More To Come


But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ. Philippians 3:20

All around me at this time there is so much preparation for Christmas. Jesus is having a birthday. This season reminds us that Jesus came to live and move among us, to direct our minds and hearts toward the Father and to save us from sin and death. Then He left. Thankfully, that is not the end of the story.

          The students in my classroom read from a book that has stories that continue for more than one lesson. At the end of the story it says, “the end” but on the prior lessons it says, “more to come.” These last few weeks as I’ve heard them read those words, “more to come” I have been reminded that there is indeed more to come.

          Jesus is coming back. He left us, only for a time and He did not leave us alone. He gave us His Holy Spirit to be with us as we journey toward home, toward the more to come. (John 14:15-18)

          So many of us are busy making preparation for December 25th, for company and parties. We are buying wrapping, cooking, baking and cleaning. We are singing and thinking of sweet baby Jesus but there is more to come.

          For those of us who know the Lord, who love and serve Him, we know that the best is yet to come. Are we preparing for that? What about December 26th and on into the new year, and the one after that? Will we prepare for Jesus return every day of our lives, waiting in anticipation for Him to come and take us home, deliver us? Or do we prepare simply for the secular celebration and hope that our pastors and Biblical scholars will do the preparing for the big return?

          Revelation 1:7 tells us to “Look, he’s coming with the clouds” and Revelation 1:8 says, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the one who is and who was and who is to come.” (emphasis mine)   In other words, Christmas, bells, whistles, gifts, cookies and so on may be over in a couple of weeks but there is more to come.

          Enjoy the happy chaos of Christmas, of the preparations, the celebrations, the fun and the love but never forget where all good things originate and from whom they come. (James 1:17)

          Jesus came and He promised more, so very much more to come.