twinkle lights and tea

In between tasks this busy day, I soak in a few moments of peace. From my Pandora station, choirs sing ancient carols. My tiny apartment glows with the warm light of candles and the Christmas tree. I sip tea and crochet and rest. Sabbath on a Tuesday afternoon.

I need this.

My days are full of people and activity and ideas. I move through each day absorbing thoughts and feelings that need more attention and eventually need to stop and be present to all these things I've stored up inside. If I don't, I get twitchy. Anxious. Upheavaled.

MM and I read Luke 2 a couple weeks ago, and the descriptions of Mary stick with me: "But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart." That's how I feel - like my heart gets filled up with thoughts and feelings and eventually, they must be pondered.

For a decade or so, I've blocked out chunks of time for "nothingness" in my calender, and guard it fiercely. And it is NOT easy! I love lots of people and have lots of interests and ideas and without those blocked out times, my calendar would fill to the brim. And I'd have NO time to sit and ponder and attend to my soul.

Whenever I get twitchy and anxious and upheavaled the first thing I do is clear my schedule and make more time for Sabbath. And if any event or meeting gets canceled, I try not to fill that time slot up with another activity, but instead reclaim that time for rest.

And on a day like today, after a week like this week, I set the to do list aside for a half hour, light some candles, and rest. I will not get everything done today, but it will be well with my soul.

I hope I remember to do this throughout this Advent season. As Christmas gets closer and I add more events to the calendar, I hope I remember to make space for candles and twinkle lights and tea and sabbath.

"In repentance and rest is your salvation,
in quietness and trust is your strength." ~Is 30:15a