Tears to Joy

Tears to Joy: December 2015

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Christmas, to-do lists, and more random thoughts

It seems like much of my stress comes having too much to do or huge projects hanging over my head. We all know the answer to the infamous question, “How do you eat an elephant?” Knowing that taking bite sized pieces eats away at the elephant does not make the task any less daunting.

I’ve learned that I do better when I break large tasks into smaller more manageable ones. I am big on lists! I have lists posted on my computer, by my bed, in my calendar, and in my phone. Once I write down something I have to do, I can let go of the worry of forgetting about it. I get great satisfaction from checking off items on my lists – whether it be a grocery list or a to-do list. I feel a sense of accomplishment with each item I cross through.

This past year I have been eating away at what seems like a ginormous task – my dissertation. I have to work on this bit by bit, piece by piece. While I still have a long way to go, I am not where I once was in the process. I am learning that the destination or completion of a project is not always the goal.  There is value in the process.

The Christmas season is filled with hustle and bustle. Things to do. Places to go. People to see. Instead of rushing to mark items off our lists, let’s enjoy the process. My favorite name of God is Emmanuel – God with us. Let me say that again.
 How often do we go through the motions of the holidays without being fully present? God is “with” us. He is not just there…God is fully present. He is not waiting at the destination; he is present throughout the journey. 

May we follow his example and set aside our to-do lists, our phones, and anything else that hinders us from being fully present and be "with" our loved ones this Christmas season.

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