It’s the holiday season. The calendar is full of upcoming events, so many things to do. I’m starting to feel a little overwhelmed at what lies ahead and struggling to be content in the present moment. But at the same time, I want to really prepare myself for Advent and the birth of Jesus.
I’ve been looking at the Thanksgiving challenge I put out there 2 weeks ago and realize, I haven’t been disciplined at completing many of the things I wanted to do, because I’ve been distracted with work and the thought of all the things I have to do. It’s a vicious cycle. We knock ourselves down over and over again, don’t we? Why do we have so many expectations during the holidays?
Why do I think I have to do all of the challenges? I just needed to pick one. I’m on my 2nd quilt. 3 quilts in one Christmas is enough of a challenge! Why do I think I have to do more? I need to learn to be content in the present moment.
Far From Fine
It’s easy to be content when things are going fine. But when things are far from fine, when we start to let worry in, or worse, fear, then contentment starts to wane. We try to find ways to stay positive, but you can’t always think or talk your way out of it. It can become a downward spiral if we let it take our focus.
I’ve done this enough that I now know these moments will pass. I will learn that I don’t control everything that happens. But I can control how I respond to things that are happening and learn to be content in my current situation. I can pray about all the things I worry about or fear. I can count on God to have my back and to know that he has it all under control.
Being content allows you to be able to fully enjoy life, no matter your circumstances. I guess that’s what is so hard about the present moment. Sometimes I tend to focus on the wrong things and that’s what can steal my joy, if I’m not careful. Here are a few action steps you can take to get back on track.
- Do your best. It is good enough. Nothing is perfect. Be ok with that.
- Be thankful and grateful for whatever you can do. You may not be able to do everything. That’s ok. Determine the most important things, and just do that.
- Don’t be taken in by material goods. If anything, let go of your “stuff”. Be happy with what you already have. Downsize. Less is more, it really is! Teach others this important quality. The world if full of too much stuff.
- Live simply. Don’t overcomplicate things.
- Try to go a whole day without one complaint.
- Ge a giver. Bring a smile and joy to someone else.
- Spend more time getting together with the people you love. Be present with them. Give them your full attention.
- Talk on the phone, FaceTime, go get some coffee with someone. Share life with others. Sometimes life is about BEING and not always DOING.
I’ve found the key to being content in the present moment is acknowledging and enjoying the presence of God, knowing that He provides, daily, everything that we could possibly need at every moment. Prayer is a must. Get a routine down. Grab some coffee. Put on some soft music. Light a candle. Make your prayer space a welcoming environment, comfortable and cozy.
God knows what we need. But he also wants to hear from us. He wants that relationship. If you don’t know where to start, start with the ‘Our Father.’ He gave us that prayer in the book of Matthew 6:11. “Give us this day our daily bread.” This prayer covers our needs for each day. Another favorite is the Psalm of the Good Shepherd. Psalm 23. The first line is, “The Lord is my Shepherd, there is nothing I shall want.”
Do you believe that God has given you all you will ever need? When we start to believe it, we will be content. That is my prayer today for you, friends. Thanks for following along. I appreciate you.