Tis The Season

Oh, sweet December.  A month full of joyful Christmas music, sparkling lights, and pine tree scented Yankee Candles.

To make things a little more interesting, lets throw in two major sinus surgeries, a pending visa, no income (no job), and some moving jitters. Sounds like a party.

Now, there are two ways I can look at this:

1. Tis the Season to freak out, cry, and overreact  OR

2.  Tis the Season to trust in the Lord and move forward in faith

I have learned through numerous trials and errors, that the second option is the much better one.  No matter how crazy things get, God will always be in control.  Always.  Nothing throws Him for a loop or sneaks up on Him unnoticed.  Nothing makes Him scratch His chin in bewilderment or confusion. I don’t always know what the future holds, but He knows.

Throughout this process of planning and preparing for my trip, I’ve been learning that 97.8% of the things I plan don’t work out. However, I’ve realized something of vital importance. God’s ways have never been and will never be my ways.  My tiny brain is limited to the now and to the yesterday, but God has no limitations.  He sees it all: the beginning, the end, and everything in between.  So when the South African Embassy NEVER answer my phone calls about my visa, I can choose to get angry and threaten the heck out of them or I can trust that God is working it all out behind the scenes (update: He sorted it out perfectly). When my sinus surgery almost gets canceled because of an insurance mistake, I can either throw myself a pity party or I can wait patiently and let God step in at the last minute to fix everything (update: The surgery was successful and I am all healed up). The one beautiful thing I discovered from my doubts and worries is that they do not effect God’s faithfulness.  Even when I am flipping out about “who knows what,” God is still faithful to do what He has promised.

He’s promised to comfort, to heal, to provide, to love, to lead, to strengthen, and to protect.

And nothing I do will mess that up!  Can I get an AMEN?!?!

I’ve discovered that one of the biggest weapons against my own doubt is gratefulness.  When I remember the things God has done and how He has provided in the past, all of my worries and fears just disappear. If He has never let me down before, then why would He start now? The way He chooses to provide may look very different from what I had in mind, but that keeps me on my toes.  When He steps in last minute to provide for my surgery or uses someone that I least expected to write me a check for over $1000 for my move to South Africa, there’s just no way I can take the credit.

So now that all of my anxieties have been handed over to the One who is strong enough to deal with them, I have the freedom to enjoy this season to it’s maximum potential.  I have the freedom to celebrate, to laugh, to dance, to eat, to sing, and to cry (tears of joy of course).

I have the freedom to forgive, I have the freedom to extend grace, and I have the freedom to not worry about anything!

But above all else during this hectic Christmas season, I have the freedom to love and to be loved in return because love is the most excellent way.

Author: Sam Stokesberry

“I have come to know a God Who has a soft spot for rebels, Who recruits people like the adulterer David, the whiner Jeremiah, the traitor Peter, and the human-rights abuser Saul of Tarsus. I have come to know a God Whose Son made prodigals the heroes of His stories and the trophies of His ministry.” ― Philip Yancey

2 thoughts on “Tis The Season”

  1. Even as you lie in bed recovering from your surgery your heart is filled with God’s grace and
    you can’t wait another day to express your gratitude for his blessings. The pain and discomfort
    will pass but God’s promise of peace is everlasting. Yes Sam, we really do believe that when
    you move forward with the plan God has for you obstacles will be overcome and he will
    use others to make it happen. As you rest and recover, remember you have the greatest love
    of all by your side and just for good measure, you have our love tucked under your pillow.


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