The Busy Season

In my line of work (the work of pastoring/curating community), we call December “The Busy Season.” In fact, since being in full-time pastoral ministry, I’ve made a pretty clear announcement to my friends and family that I would be unavailable until December 26. It’s a season with many extra events to do, places to be, and people to see. And I’ve pretty well held to this, even in my marriage. I’m not saying it was the right thing to do, but I felt justified in doing so. But this year, something changed.

My wife, Kristi, and I now have two teenagers. They are both children in foster care who came to live with us in June. Marriage probably should have been that change, but evidently it took these two kids to really change my mindset.

Yes. The month of December, when we wait for Christmas (Advent Season) is very busy. Yes. There are a lot of things to be done and I have a lot of commitments. But I don’t want to let that get in the way of my spending intentional and important time with my family. And, for that matter, with the other people in my life who have become family. I don’t want to miss this time.

You may not be a pastor, but this time of year can get busy for everyone. With travel arrangements and commitments, the calendar can get pretty full. But I think in this season we were meant to actually slow down a little bit. To pause to take a deep breath and enjoy the moment. To drive through the neighborhood at night looking for Christmas lights. To remember that we are a people called to be connected with something bigger than ourselves. This Sunday we will gather together for our dinner at 6:00 pm, we will hear the story of a guy forced into pausing for a bit (Zechariah), and we will slow down a bit in order to hear one another. I can’t wait.

In Community,