A previous commitment to a church event caused last minute changes to flight plans. In order to accomplish all that had been crammed into an over-committed schedule, arrangements were made to catch the latest plane possible, arriving well after midnight to my final destination. Because it was work related, much energy and effort was expended over the next two days, leaving me pretty tired when I arrived home, again near the hour that turned Cinderella back into a commoner.
My household was sleeping as I sat down to my computer to answer a few emails that had been neglected over previous days. This is what I found on my desk calendar:
Take a closer look.
“Why did you put an X where the Christ should be?”
- Mary Mac, age eight
I had hurriedly written the notation in shorthand, allowing room for the other items that were sure to fill its space. It is with concerted balance and intentionality that I approach this particular season in our lives. I want to do it all but I don’t want to miss a thing, an approach that at its core is an oxymoron, with bold emphasis on the word moron.
The Christmas season can bring an even more frantic pace to an already hasty walk. We tap our foot with irritation in the drive-thru line, demanding that fast food appear even faster. We hurry our children from one place to another because it is the only speed we know. We glance at our watches impatiently in the grocery store as we wait behind the elderly, the chatty, the check writer and the coupon collector. Our time is the only time of importance and our frenetic interactions make it apparent. We want what we want exactly when we want it. And we surely do not want to wait for it.
We don’t want to wait until we can afford it.
We don’t want to wait until it is our turn.
We don’t want to wait until the timing is right.
We don’t want to wait for the answer to become clear.
The question, written in eight year old scrawl on a messy desk calendar, reminded me that where Christ is absent, unrest is prevalent. While I know that He is always with me, it is in my haste that I miss out on the finer details of His presence, relying on a blurry outline as poor replacement.
A calendar full of commitments leaves little room for the presence of Christ. It was a timely reminder from a well-intentioned child that influenced the reversal of obligations not only for this momentous, joyful month, but for those going forward.
Because, according to a wise eight year old, why would I want to put an X where Christ should be?