{Mary} Christmas = Contentment

We started building our home this summer. Visions danced in my head of Christmas morning. No sugarplums — just a decorated mantle, fire burning, lights shimmering and the kids waking up in their newly-decorated rooms with their matching pajamas. Oh, fantasyland!

Then, reality hit. We were over-budget and had to make adjustments, which caused a delay. We are now scheduled to move in January. God had a better plan.

I’ve never thought of myself as a materialistic person. I usually only shop during a sale or with a coupon. I am perfectly happy driving a dented minivan with lots of carpooling miles. But, this house has been a struggle. Worldly desires creep into my mind, but I hear the same word from God … contentment.

And, then, I think about being content at Christmas. Especially in this season, I find myself bombarded with store ads and worldly to-do lists.

Most Christmas stories focus on Mary, the virgin who gave birth to Jesus. Lately, though, God keeps reminding me of another Mary. You know, Lazarus and Martha’s sister.

The story begins in Luke 10:38 when Mary and Martha were preparing for Jesus’ visit. Martha was busy decorating, organizing and cooking. Martha was an over-achiever. Can you even imagine how her house would be decorated for Christmas? It would put us all to shame!

Mary, though, sat at Jesus’ feet. She was more concerned with Jesus than the matching table linens. Mary had her priorities straight. She was content.

And I asked myself, Am I Martha or Mary? Is Jesus the priority or have I been too busy focusing on the “stuff”?

God has given us the only gift we need. The baby was born. He became the perfect man. He poured His heart out for others. He gave life, healed the sick, He loved and accepted everyone … even the most broken and humiliated. He gave His own life so we could have eternal life in heaven.

And, if that is all He ever gave, it was enough. Jesus is all we need.

Yet, we want more. As thankful as I am for our house, it is a materialistic thing. A house can be gone in minutes by a hurricane or tornado. The Christmas presents we give our kids will probably end up broken, lost or forgotten. We need to focus on Jesus.

When we find contentment in Jesus alone, our perspective changes. Even as life’s heartaches hit, there is hope. We discover that Jesus really is the answer to our problems! He can heal, provide comfort, restore, forgive, renew. He fills a void that nothing else will. He, alone, needs to be the message this Christmas. Mary got it right.

“But godliness with contentment is great gain.” 1 Timothy 6:6

Let’s help each other have a {Mary} Christmas. What will you do to focus on Jesus this season?

 

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