As we are getting closer to Christmas during this Advent season, it is easy to find ourselves overwhelmed with busyness. The pressures of making preparations for family gatherings, Christmas shopping, church activities, and attending Christmas functions can make the days pass in a blur. You may also find your mailbox filled daily with solicitations for donations to various worthy causes. It can be enough to make you to want to pack your bags and escape the holiday frenzy! That is where the example of our Lord Jesus comes in. Luke 5:16 tells us, “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.”
All through Scripture, Jesus takes time away from people to spend time with his Father. He understood how important it is to pray for and with others, but he also understood the importance of being alone with God. He often leaves the crowds he is preaching to, and goes up the mountainside so that he can pray alone. He sometimes goes to a garden in the quiet of the evening for prayer.
Jesus ministered to many during his earthly ministry, but he did so according to his Father’s will, and he constantly spent time with God. What a great example for us during this Advent season! You are not called to every Christmas activity or event, and you don’t have to help everywhere. Quiet your heart and see where God is leading. Don’t forget to spend time with Him. As we discussed in a previous devotional, Jesus had multiple purposes for his presence on earth. His greatest purpose is found in Matthew 1:21, to save us from our sins, but he is also an example for us in living a life pleasing to God.
Seek God’s will in all that you do, and spend time with Him. Psalm 46:10 reads, “Be still, and know that I am God.” Perhaps you need to take a pause from the whirlwind of activities around you and let your Lord minister to your soul, as you await his coming.
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Today’s Activity: Take some time out of your day today to be still. Make a cup of coffee or tea, seek out your favorite place to relax, and put on some worship music or read your Bible. Put aside the stresses of the day. Don’t think about anything except that you are a son or daughter of the one true King. The Creator of the universe loves you and knows you by name. Spend some time with your Heavenly Father and let His healing presence soothe your spirit and touch your soul with His peace.
Nancy Golden earned her master’s degree from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary. She is an adjunct faculty member at Dallas Christian College and she and her husband Phil are members of the Church of the Nazarene in Carrollton, Texas where they serve in various capacities. Today’s blog post is an excerpt (Day Seven) from her Advent devotional book – Taking Back Advent: Moving from the Mundane to the Miraculous, for sale just in time for the holidays. It is now available on Amazon in Kindle and paperback. Nancy hopes you’ll consider adding this devotional to your holiday tradition and join her in Taking Back Advent as we move through the Christmas season!