I don’t know about you, but don’t you find Easter, birthdays, Christmas, baptisms seem to arrive in your schedule like a leopard hovering in the veld, and then pounce the day has come. I find myself chasing my tail, conducting the masses like a drill sergeant, plagued by the right gift, the right food. If your traditions could talk, what would they say? Mine would most certainly scream mayhem, madness and me.
An unwelcome distraction or a long awaited opportunity
I am discouraged by my inability to be intentional when these occasions arrive. I would love to welcome them into my life, instead of greeting them with that sinking feeling. To be able to say with confidence “Come in, I am ready for you!”. I don’t want them to become burdens, or moments to build my self-esteem. I want them to become treasures and moments to build my faith in Christ. An unwelcome distraction or a long awaited opportunity.
In Noel Pipers book, “Treasuring God in our Traditions” she helpfully emphasises the reality that:
“Grownups have a history with God. We have leaned on his strength, learned his love, and depended on his faithfulness. We have suffered the pain of his discipline and felt the relief of his forgiveness”
(Noel Piper, Treasuring our God in our Traditions).
And then God calls us to take his truth and to:
18 Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads.
Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.
So, we are called to create any and every opportunity to burn God’s truth into our lives and then brand that truth into the lives of others. Namely our children, but it’s not exclusive to them. So, in our traditions, celebrations or habits, we open doors, we create a furnace to burn and brand the truth of God into our moments and memories. Impress the truth of God, when you do that Easter long weekend, when you head to Christmas lunch, when we wrap a gift and join that ceremony.
“We can only give what we already have”
So, when we are faced with the unexpected arrival of our celebrations and occasions, I need to be ready. My sister in law lives in Khazakstan, and culturally the community are free to arrive at any time of the day for tea. And tea is not just a cup with a side order of koeksister. No, tea is laying out a spread of cold meats, sweets and biscuits. She can never not be prepared for the unexpected guest. Being prepared enables her to give, what she has.
“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also”
So, what your celebrations, traditions and habits look like, there your heart will be also.If your traditions could talk, what would they say about your heart?
If I am consumed by the food, the people, the gift, then that is where my heart lies. If I am enthralled by God’s truth, then I will be intentional about the truth I can share that day. If the word of God is stored in your heart, then you can give the word of God to another. We can only give what we already have.
Come Away allows your traditions to talk truth
Here at Come Away we want to think intentionally about all the celebrations, traditions and habits we inherit and can create to impart the truth of God’s word. Whether it to be to our children, our friends or family we are all enveloped in a host of occasions.
Come Away wants to arm us with truth when the occasion arrives with regular thinking posts. And we want to provide you with a spread of resources that create truth filled memories and moments.
Let us share our first Christmas resource with you in: Why I am not ashamed of what’s in this bag?