The table is set. The dishes are washed. The punch bowl is set up. The house is (mostly) tidied up. The pork is ready to bake. The potatoes are sliced, peeled, ready to be mashed. The ingredients for stuffing are measured out and ready to be combined. The laundry is drying.
Only a few more things to do tomorrow to get ready for Shearron Family Christmas. I'm looking forward to hosting my first family holiday, but there sure is a lot of preparation that goes into something that should be pretty simple! That's always how it is though, isn't it? So much goes into meal planning - the menu-creating, the trip to the grocery store, the cooking of the meal - only to have the food devoured in a fraction of the time it took to get to the plate in the first place. And for the cook? All that planning and anticipation builds up to just a few moments as everyone gobbles up the goods. Holiday meals and large gatherings only magnify this reality.
Tonight as I was wrapping up my list of things to get done, I started to think about anticipation. The anticipation of a tasty meal, the anticipation of Christmas, the anticipation of a babe that would be placed in a manger. I doubt there was any disappointment in the air on the night that Jesus took his first breath. Just like there was no disappointment about when my Zachari Jane made her first peep that February night. I'm reminded that the things I trouble myself with, the things that fill my time and often make me uptight, simply do not matter. Easier to say than to believe, definitely. Nevertheless, I'm trying hard to truly bask in the warmth of the anticipation of Christ this season and in this late night moment, I'm thankful.