I love the Christmas season. In fact, in my family, I’m the one person you can count on having a fully decorated tree and sometimes outdoor lights. Unlike my siblings, I’m a family one. But it’s me Aunt Wanda who everyone expects to have the holiday cheer. As much as I enjoy the season, I do dread the messy clutter that ensues as I prepare to deck my halls and trim my tree. Boxes once neatly stored in the attic then take up residence in my extra bedroom creating clutter. My furniture had to be dragged around and moved to other rooms of the house to make room for the tree.
For a few short weeks, I allow my house to be in complete upheaval to be mesmerized by the twinkling lights and shiny paper. And sometimes when I look at the mess the beauty of the season brings to my home, I wonder is it worth it all. Is it worth having to bother someone to pull my trinkets down from the attic? Is it worth walking past heaps of boxes? Is it worth disrupting my normal way of living just for a tree and some lights?
Is it worth it all?
Is that not a question we all find ourselves asking at some point in our life? Is it worth us moving from places of normalcy to welcome something different and new into our lives if only for a season? We are at the crux of a new year, and it’s natural for our hearts and minds to begin thinking about planning for ways to be a better us. But nothing new enters into our lives with disrupting the old in some form.
To bring the miracle of Christ to the world, the life of a virgin girl was interrupted, and things became a bit messy. A baby before the husband …. created one messy situation. It threatened to wreck her relationships, reputation, and plans. Her relationship with Joseph was strained because of what he thought he knew about her. Can you imagine what the talk in the town must have been regarding Mary’s reputation? Here she was supposed to be engaged but not yet married but having a baby. The well-laid plans she had were being rocked by the impending birth of something new and grand in her life. Life wasn’t normal anymore.
But right in the midst of the mess, a miracle was being birthed.
As I reflect on Mary, I am reminded that it’s often in the messiness of life that we see the miraculous hand of God. But what am I (are you) willing to let go to make room for the new? Can you welcome the challenge of the mess – a situation or state of affairs that is confused or full of difficulties?
I don’t know what the new year will bring, but I hope for something different. Yet, I am aware that new and different is not often ushered in the way we expect.
But is it worth wading through the confusion or trekking through difficulties to see the light of Christ shining in fresh new ways? While the answer is indeed yes, it takes courage to let go what is familiar and find the freedom to embrace and rest in the uncertainty of all that new things bring.
I must be willing to let go of what is safe, clean and ordinary and embrace the messy interruptions life brings.
While I have managed to restore my home back to its original state, I am left with this reminder as I eagerly look forward to the coming year – making room creates messiness but it’s worth it in the end.
What are you making room for in the upcoming year?