Refocusing Your Heart Between Christmas and The New Year
It was Christmas Eve. Time to celebrate Christ coming into the world and peace on earth (Luke 2:14).
Yet, I was anything but peaceful. Instead, I rushed around cooking and preparing and doing for a family party an hour drive away. Mexican dip simmered in the crockpot. Cookies lay in decorative tins. Packages wrapped in colorful holiday paper awaited their rightful recipients.
As I hurried to shower, quick fixing my hair, throwing on make-up, and getting dressed in party-wear, my heart felt un-peaceful—chaotic even. Bouncing down a flight of stairs and looking at the clock, I was scurrying to load everything into the car followed by our family.
Whew! We were finally on the road. Feeling overwhelmed, I began to replay the day in my mind. I realized I had done everything, and no one contributed or helped.
Before I knew it, another party started in my heart—a big ole pity party. But I’ve thrown enough pity parties to know that no one likes to come. I desperately wanted to refocus my mind and redirect my heart. I wanted to embody the peace this season is supposed to be about yet felt nothing but frustration in my heart.
Am I the only one that has felt this tension when you know you need to rethink how you’ve been operating so that new life and peace can enter your heart and home?
I worked through key things that helped me align my heart and mind and find peace again before the new year.
Here are five ways to refocus find P.E.A.C.E. for your wife-heart this new year:
Pray. Sometimes we pray as a last resort. Perhaps if I had started out my day by praying instead of diving into all the preparations, my heart would have proved more peaceful and my mind more thoughtful about what was ahead and how I might ask for help. Take time this new year to pray first before thinking too much or talking too much with people other than God.
Evaluate. Evaluate your priorities, how much time you’ll have to complete the projects or tasks you typically need or would like to complete, and who might be able to help. Consider what’s important to keep and what you can let go. Then, delegate tasks to those in your home who can help get things done so you feel less overwhelmed. For instance, you could say: I need someone to help wrap gifts, place the cookies in tins, and load the car 15 minutes before we leave. Who wants which job?
Accept. Part of setting yourself up to experience a more peaceful heart and home this new year is learning to accept who we are and who are family members are, in Christ. We are sons and daughters of the King of Kings, valued and loved. Because Jesus is the reason for all we do, we are able to accept less than Pinterest-worthy recipes, immaculate homes, fashion, perfect family members, or the perfect family photos. While those things are okay, if these are our standard, we will be consistently striving for unrealistic results, which leads to a restless and un-peaceful heart.
Choose. We make choices every day and special days are no exception. This new year, you get to choose peace over chaos, people over preparations, and Jesus over everything. Sit down and decide how you will manage your schedule and calendar to reflect your priorities.
Enter. Entering into God’s rest brings real inner peace. Sure, there are details to attend to and daily things to get done. Still, let’s also make sure we purposefully lie down in green pastures and let the Good Shepherd lead us beside still waters (Psalm 23:2). We can be mindful to consistently enter into God’s presence.
Wife Step: Practice P.E.A.C.E. to set yourself up for a new year you’ll remember. Pray, evaluate, accept, choose, and enter. Ask the Lord to help you with each way to acquire real peace in your wife-heart from the Prince of Peace.
Karen Friday is a pastor’s wife and women’s ministry leader. As an award-winning writer and avid speaker, she loves words and God’s Word. For over a decade, she has balanced the busy life of church ministry with working from her home office in marketing where she is frequently referred to as Girl Friday. A blogger, Karen “Girl” Friday engages a community every week, Hope is Among Us. She has published a number of articles and devotions in both print and online media, and is currently working on her first book. Karen’s writing connects family life experiences, Christian ministry, and real life scenarios as women to the timeless truths of Scripture. Vulnerable about her own marriage journey, Karen knows life never gets more real than as a wife. Karen and her husband Mike have two grown children and two grandchildren. The entire family is fond of the expression, “TGIF: Thank God it’s Friday.” They owe Monday an apology. Visit her blog at KarenGirlFriday.com