A peaceful heart during a hectic holiday

Isaiah 9:6 prophesied the birth of Jesus.

For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Have you ever felt like the Christmas season is anything but peaceful?  My holiday seasons often feel chaotic and hectic and busy, not peaceful.

The thing is, peacefulness is a state of mind, not necessarily present circumstance.  If I go into the Christmas season thinking I am supposed to feel like I am on a beach vacation, I am going to be sorely disappointed.  There are gifts to buy, parties to plan, cards to mail, dinners to attend.

As the woman of the house, I set the tone.  If I am stressed, everyone else will be.  I can choose to create a peaceful atmosphere. I have the power to ruin a dinner before it even starts if I am fussing and stressing in my preparation.

And while I cannot control the mood and the attitude of those around me, I can control my own.  I love how Romans puts it, “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone” (Rom 12:18).   I can let the Prince of Peace rule in my heart.  I can determine that I will keep my perspective straight when things get crazy.   Colossians 3:15 “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.”

And the secret is found in that last verse… and be thankful.

When my house is dirty
When gifts need to be purchased
When my Christmas card needs to be mailed out
When presents need to be wrapped
When meals need to be prepared
When decorations need to be hung
When I feel overcommitted

I will be thankful for the people in my life.  I will be thankful for the resources I do have.  I will be thankful I can help others.  I will be thankful that I get to live in a country where I can worship freely.  I can be thankful for the heated home I get to decorate and the car I drive to run my errands.  I will be thankful for Jesus, my Prince of Peace who always pours out grace on my the moment I need Him the most.

I will choose to have a peaceful heart, even when my holiday is hectic.