I don’t particularly appreciate running errands. Honestly, I despise it when I’m in the middle of cooking and realize I’m an ingredient short. I recently found myself in this predicament and had to make a quick trip to the store to restock my kitchen essentials. As I begrudgingly headed to the store, I planned out every stop and made it my mission to get home quickly. But on the journey through town, I came face-to-face with one of my worst enemies – the train.
You can imagine my stress levels as I turned down the road and saw checkered barriers lowered. Beyond the bend, a line of 200-plus boxcars barreled down the tracks.
“I have to go! I have too many things to do to wait on this train!” I thought.
In the middle of my hurry-up-to-wait attitude, I noticed a random white truck sitting on the other side of the road.
“What is he doing?” I suspiciously wondered.
Standing outside the vehicle stood a man in work clothes. He appeared to be walking toward the back of his truck, but I couldn’t quite make out exactly what was happening.
That’s when I saw it.
In the heat of the day, in the backseat of the cab, was a little boy eagerly awaiting the speedy train to zoom by him so he could look at it. The man, who I assume was his father, pulled out his cell phone and began recording the little boy’s reactions. The conductor blew the whistle as the train came across the turn, and the boy’s smile grew even wider.
Between each box, I couldn’t help but look over and see this little one giggle, cheer, and enjoy the special moment that his dad had orchestrated. The little one was filled with delight at the simple experience!
In today’s crazy world, we, as Christians, moms, dads, employees, children, or friends, seem to always be rushing for what’s next. This season will be filled with parties, dinners, and get-togethers. But I can’t help but wonder – where is our delight?
While trying to “keep up with the Joneses,” are we taking time to enjoy time with our heavenly Father and celebrate the birth of His son?
Or are we so stressed that a list in our hands keeps us from the true reason for the season?
For many, Christmas is a season of nostalgia. We remember everything from the early mornings to the smells of breakfast cooking. But somewhere along the way, those memories were replaced by the never-ending list of chores and events.
Instead of seeking joy in both simple and scriptural things, we find ourselves sitting on the other side of the street pouting because the situations in our lives aren’t moving fast enough to accommodate our wants and wishes.
Do you think that little boy was thinking about all the places he needed to be while he enjoyed the sight of a hunk of metal? Of course not. He savored every moment.
This Christmas season might be the perfect time to stop what you’re doing, leave the stress behind, and refocus your attention on the things that matter. Spend time with your family and Savior. Take some time to smell the roses … or watch trains!
Don't be anxious about anything; rather, bring up all of your requests to God in your prayers and petitions, along with giving thanks (Philippians 4:6, ESV).