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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The Shopping Mall Or the Desert?

Those of you who already have your Christmas shopping done really annoy me.  I just can’t seem to get my act together this year, and I’m running out of time. 

And when I do go out, I always seem to forget something or have terrible luck.  Like when I was in Justice, I forgot my 40% off coupon so I had to send Doug back to return and repurchase the goods.  Then, I got overcharged for my shoes at Macy’s and I had to stand in line a second time (and an extra 20 minutes) just to get my credit back. 

I’ve resorted to finishing my shopping on the Internet.  The only problem?  I’m terrified everything won’t arrive by Christmas Eve, even if I pay the extra shipping.  How am I ever going to be ready for Christmas?

Maybe I’m going about this all wrong.  What should I really be doing to prepare for the coming of my Lord?

I could take a few lessons from John the Baptist.  He didn’t seem to spend much time cutting holiday coupons or fighting the holiday traffic.  From the reports about his wardrobe, I don’t think he frequented the shopping malls.  Instead, he prepared for the coming of the Lord in the most unusual place – the desert. 

After 460 years of silence, John the Baptist spoke the first prophetic words since Malachi.  The Word of the Lord didn’t come in the cities, the marketplace, or even the temples.  All those places are much too noisy.  I for one do much better listening when it’s quiet – and the desert is much quieter than the shopping malls. 

In the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, some of us need the silence of the desert.   Silence clears our heads and calms our spirits.   It’s in silence that we can think are best thoughts and, yes, sometimes we can even hear the Word of the Lord.

Are you ready for Christmas this year?

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