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“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.” James 4:8 (NASB)

Have you ever felt like your mind was spinning and trying to pull you in too many directions? Have you ever felt like maybe it was time to retreat and draw near to God? In all the rush to finish preparing for our Christmas celebration, I knew I needed to say no to a good thing this week. I didn’t go to church Sunday with my family–I needed to be alone with my Father. There was nothing more I wanted that quiet morning–my thirst could only find quenching by Him. In preparation of my heart and mind for our Christmas celebration this week, I knew it would require more than just singing a few inspired carols, getting gifts wrapped, the remaining lights strung up, or meals prepared in advance. I knew my heart and mind felt distracted by the stuff the world expected in such a celebration. I knew there was much more yet to prepare. Gratefully, I remembered the good news–the world’s standards were not my Lord’s standards. He instead whispered to my soul come, wanting my quiet and contrite heart. He wanted me to walk my teen daughter by His quiet waters and remember why–why and who we celebrate at Christmas. I needed more of Him Sunday. I needed more of Christ. I needed to experience a refilling of His Spirit, a long worship, and reminders that He remains the reason for these holy days.

I pray that for you also today. Before you search out one more recipe or one more decorating idea–hide away, still yourself, and draw near to the One you love and celebrate Him this Christmas.