It is here once again… Christmas time! Every year as I reread the Christmas story, something new jumps out at me. This year, it’s a verse in the Luke 2 story of the shepherds visiting Mary and baby Jesus.
“17 Upon seeing this miraculous sign, the shepherds recounted what had just happened. 18 Everyone who heard the shepherds’ story was astonished by what they were told.
19 But Mary treasured all these things in her heart and often pondered what they meant.”
It is this last verse that struck me; Mary had so many things that could have taken up all the room in her mind that night. She was young, unmarried, having just birthed her first child without a midwife or even a proper bed. She was in an unfamiliar town, with unfamiliar dangers. On top of all that, she had to be wondering what challenges her new-born son would face as the messiah. With so many significant fears and thoughts to reflect back on in the years to come, it was the shepherd’s tale of the supernatural, of the miraculous, that stuck with her. It must have been a moment of pure awe for her, a moment she recognized the power and the mystery of God.
This time of year can be full of fun, beauty and meaning, but with that often comes stress and anxiety. In these moments, it can help to take a few seconds to consider these questions: What are you keeping and treasuring in your heart this year? What are you most grateful for in 2023? I hope that the wonder of God, and the love of those around you melts your stress away.
Peace and joy to you all!
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