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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

A “Mary Heart”

by Pam Roth
Can you believe it? We’re just five days away from Christmas Day!  So, you know what that means?  You have limited time to complete all of your shopping, wrapping, decorating, baking and cooking.  That statement either stresses you out or brings a sense of relief. If you’re feeling relief, then I hope that’s a good thing and not just a feeling of, “Whew, this is almost over.”

Hopefully, you’re relieved because you have a plan, and you’re working that plan.  Hopefully, you’re not allowing the world’s view of Christmas to drive your decisions. Hopefully, you’re focused on what Christmas really means, and you’re accomplishing all that needs to be done to enjoy your time with family and friends.  Plus, let’s hope you’re not stressing over what you cannot do this year physically or financially; but that you’re resting in what you are able to do.

The other night, we had guests at our home, and the account of Christ’s birth was read aloud.  As I listened, I began thinking about the scene at the birth of Christ.  What was the weather like the night Jesus was born?  Was it mild and humid, or was it cold and damp?  What did the stable look like?  What were Joseph and Mary thoughts as they watched their newborn son lying in a manger?

And then, my mind went to one of my favorite verses in the Christmas story, Luke 2:19: “But Mary treasured up all of these things and pondered them in her heart.”  I cherish that verse.  Whenever I read it, it reminds me of all the things I love.  It brings back memories of the first time I saw each of our children and grandchildren - that overwhelming feeling that you’re looking at a miracle.    

Christmas truly is a reminder of God’s miracles: the miracle of birth (specifically God’s son) and the miracle of life (eternal life with the Lord).  It’s no wonder Mary felt such an awesome responsibility to be the mother of Jesus.  She had delivered our Savior and was looking into the face of God.

So, what do you treasure this time of year?  Is it spending time with family and friends?  Do you like listening to Christmas music, going to church services or the Messiah?  Is sitting by a fire with a cup of hot chocolate and a good book something you enjoy? Do you treasure the smells of Christmas: fresh evergreens, cookies baking, and a ham or turkey in the oven?

What are you pondering?  Are you like Mary?  You have so much to be rejoicing over; yet there are so many responsibilities to think about.  Are you concerned about your future?  Are you pondering the loss of a loved one or perhaps a broken relationship?

Like Mary, Christmas brings with it a time for us to reflect on all that we have – the things we treasure; it also provides for us a time to ponder the important decisions we need to make.  We may only have five days left until Christmas Day; but we have a lifetime to have a
“Mary heart.”

How to have a “Mary heart”

  • Treasure your relationship with the Lord
  • Treasure your family
  • Treasure time with those you love
  • Ponder the path you are on
  • Ponder your purpose
  • Ponder your future

Feel free to leave a comment below.
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