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Monday, November 14, 2011

"A Lot of Stuff On Your Plate"

My 5 year old often says things that make me laugh ... it's amazing how profound he can be without even knowing it. Last week, he stopped coloring, looked up and asked, "Jen, do you know what Thanksgiving means?" He thought for a moment and his eyes narrowed and his little eyebrows met. "Well ... hmm ... it means having a lot of stuff on your plate!" 

I can't believe it is mid-November. Everywhere I turn, I see Christmas decorations, pre-black Friday sales, the stores extending their hours to "holiday hours" ... Each year, it starts earlier and the stress levels increase.  Even this little, 5-year old boy notices that stores have "pushed" aside Thanksgiving in an effort to increase their own profits before year-end. Stores even open on Thanksgiving to make sure they get their "piece of the pie."

When I look ahead toward the holidays, it makes me tired ... just thinking about all of the things that have to be done. Sam said it best when he used the phrase ... "having a lot of stuff on your plate." Each year, it becomes increasingly difficult to keep "all of those plates spinning" and the focus in the right place.

While others get sucked into and dragged down by the craziness of "the holidays," while people fight over the last "bargain,"  I find myself grateful in an ungrateful world ... giving thanks when no one around me is thankful. I am counting my blessings, when others around me feel less than blessed.

I have learned (the hard way) that the "stuff on my plate" just doesn't matter. I can't let it "fill me up." I have to be selective about what I place "on my plate, be careful what I 'eat' " and look past it to the Giver of all good things.  I am so immensely thankful for all that HE has provided ... not the world. That fact that God has blessed me beyond anything I could have ever hoped or imagined is ever present before me.

What's on your plate this holiday season?  I personally don't want to look back at Thanksgiving and Christmas with regret that I wasn't focused on giving thanks for all He has given me or celebrating the birth of my personal Savior.

So during this Thanksgiving and Christmas season, I am going to be very selective of what I "put on my plate" and start a new year with no regrets ... I hope you will too!

"I am too blessed to be stressed and too anointed to be disappointed." - anonymous

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