By: Sarah Oates-Walker
Ever since Reliant K’s Christmas album “Let It Snow Baby… Let it Reindeer” was released back in 2007, the track “I Celebrate the Day” has been my favourite Christmas song.
And with this Christmas wish is missed
The point I could convey
If only I could find the words to say to let You know how much You’ve touched my life
Because here is where You’re finding me, in the exact same place As New Year’s eve
And from a lack of my persistency
We’re less than half as close as I want to be
Every time I hear these lyrics, it is like they were plucked right from within my heart. Every year I passionately plunge forward into prayer and study, only to find myself on a rollercoaster of ups and downs in the consistency with which I pursue God. As I sit back and reflect upon another year gone by, and what I had hoped to accomplish in my relationship with Jesus, I am always a little disappointed, as it sometimes feels like I am right where I started.
Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. (1 Corinthians 9:24)
I am an avid runner. It is one of my most favourite activities. I don’t usually sign up for races, but when I do I make a point of training harder than when I am running just for fun. Some days it is easy to run, and other days it is a chore. Some days my muscles seem tired and sluggish and I struggle from start to finish. I find I am quickly out of breath or I might get a stitch in my side. Despite a challenging run, it never stops me from digging deep and pushing through to finish the path I have set before myself. When the race day comes all the hard work will have paid off. Regardless of what race day may hold my muscles are ready to endure even if I feel sluggish. My mind is strong and ready to drive me forward one step at a time, and with the passion I have put into training I am determined to finish well, even if that means finishing dead last. The important thing is that I have finished what I have set out to do.
Our spiritual life is so much like training for race. Some days it is so easy to pursue God and to hear his voice, and other days it is a struggle. With each push forward, we come a little closer to finishing our race and reaching our prize.
And so this Christmas I’ll compare the things I felt in prior years
To what this midnight made so clear:
That You have come to meet me here
Even when it feels like I am right where I started in my relationship with God, I take great joy in knowing that when I come near to God, his Word promises he will come near to me (James 4:8). Whether I have made a lot of progress or just a little it doesn’t matter in this moment; what matters is that God is ready to meet me right where I am today.
And I, I celebrate the day
That You were born to die
So I could one day pray for You to save my life
Praying that you will all have a very Merry Christmas!