A few days ago, I decided to have some friends in tonight for something I was calling Still Me (“Be still and know that I am God.” — Psalm 46:10). A little mulled wine, Christmas breads, quiet carols, recollections of Christmas past and hopes for Christmas future. A time to put down the wrappings, the baking spoon, the broom, the to-do list and allow ourselves to be filled with the true Spirit of Christmas. My soul felt quieted even as I typed the invitation on Facebook.
As always, I let God do the planning. My invitation lists are built like this: set a target number, put a bunch of names in a hat, pray for God to do His will, and start drawing until I reach that target. Old school friends, neighbors, friends from church, a few people I barely know but have a desire to get to know… God decided who the “chosen 12” would be.
I envisioned an intimate gathering for a half dozen but I invited 12 people in hopes that half my friends are sane. And the RSVPs are in. Two? Two friends who are ready for Christmas Quiet instead of Christmas Crazy???
OK. Confession time! I decided I can’t be ready for these two wonderful friends… My house looks like we’re waiting for the insurance adjustor after a disaster. Even with low lighting, nay, a single lantern to light the way, I can’t pull it off. So, we’ll wait until after Christmas and get together for what my friend Lori calls “a deep sigh.”
But how about my heart? Is it ready for a guest? Because Advent is supposed to be all about getting ready for the most High. God Himself, in the form of a precious baby, will once again freshly enter our lives. And I, well-intentioned, and supposedly madly in love with a God who will again remind me of His greater love at the stroke of midnight in two days, am so caught up with baking and buying, cooking and cleaning, that I can’t stop long enough to welcome Him into my home.
So, at 7 p.m. this evening, I will put down whatever it is that I am doing, pick up my Bible and let God choose how He and I will spend a half hour. Still me, dear Lord. Grab my busy hands, my occupied mind and my faintly beating heart and set them right. I want my home to be ready for You.