Merry Christmas SUMite Family,
My heart is deeply moved for all of you. I realize that this time of year and Christmas day, especially can create in us dreams and expectations about how we want the holiday to unfold. I know that I often felt disappointment, anger, frustration when it didn’t follow the idea I held in my heart.
Please hold the day loosely and before the Father in surrendered prayer. Realize that things will not go exactly as you hoped. And you may attend Christmas Eve service alone or a family member changes how you wanted the day to play out.
I want to give you some tools to use to walk through this day with peace and love.
Start by blessing yourself with peace. We are to model the life of Jesus, right? He blessed. Remember the sermon on the Mount? The Bible says to bless and do not curse. (Romans 12:14)
Just this morning I found myself struggling with a million things, a long to-do list, spiritual unrest (I’ll share that story later), emotional unrest. I was driving and frustrated with every motorist in front of me who was obviously moving waaaaay too slow, when the Holy Spirit said, “Bless yourself.” So immediately I said the following and I give this gift to you as well. It works. It really does:
(Say aloud) I bless myself with peace. I bless myself with peace. I bless myself with peace. (Immediately, my shoulders relaxed, and I felt the tension drain from my body and soul.) I bless myself with the attributes of heaven; peace, joy and goodness. I know that I am loved. Lynn, Jesus loves you. Lynn, Jesus loves you. Lynn, Jesus loves you. I bless the motorists around me with peace. I bless my home with peace. I bless my kids. I bless my husband. I love you Jesus. I love you Jesus. Holy Spirit fill my car. Fill my heart. Empower me to walk in your grace in this hour. Thank you, Jesus. I love you.
I want to offer you something else to ponder this season. Perhaps you can take this blessing to others. The power of blessing can change years of hurt. When I pray with people on the phone or in a Freedom Prayer session, we always come to a place where we bless those we are forgiving. We ask Jesus to bless them with what they need. And usually these people we have forgiven need a lot. So, bless them in your prayer time. Forgive and then bless.
To take this blessing a step further, at the dinner table, perhaps, you can say the blessing for the food. Or you can walk around the table and touch each shoulder and bless them with words of affirmation. Take advantage of this time when hearts are tender and share what you see as their potential.
For example, I would say something like this over Mike: I bless you today because you are a man of integrity. You are an amazing father. I bless you because you give of your heart to me and our children, and grandchildren. I bless you to be recognized at work for your long hours. Your ability to problem solve. I bless you to be respected and liked by your clients, and I bless you that bosses will love you. I bless you because you have loved me well. I bless you with the love of Jesus.
For my daughter: I bless you today because you have a heart of kindness. I bless you because you deeply care about orphans. I bless you today because you apply yourself to attain the goals set before you. I bless you with greater experiences of love with Jesus. I bless you because you are a loyal and true friend. I bless you because you carry a servant heart. I bless you to walk fully in all the Father has prepared for you. I bless you with the love of Jesus today.
These are short blessings and perhaps you can speak them out, perhaps you can only pray them in your prayer time. But, bless your family in this season. It may change the entire day, month and the years ahead.
My friend, Pam Farrel, wrote her blessing out one year and gave it to her father at Christmas, who was an alcoholic for her entire childhood. She grew up in a mismatched home. He wept. She wept. He began to ask her questions about Jesus in the months following. He gave his heart to Christ and that was the last Christmas he had on this earth.
OH, BLESS and do not curse. Love and let Jesus shine in you. Give Jesus your expectations and let Him overwhelm you with His surprises.
I love you SUMites. I truly LOVE you.
Taking the week off from here. See you after Christmas. Love, Lynn