This time of year certainly comes along with a lot of preparations to be made! There are decorations to put up, presents to buy, cookies to bake, travel to arrange, and so much more!
I also just so happen to be 37 weeks pregnant. There sure are a lot of preparations to be made when a baby is on the way! I want to ready the baby’s room, pack a hospital bag, make freezer meals, arrange care for my daughter during labor, and that list goes on and on and on!
Also, we are to constantly and actively prepare our hearts for our Savior! It takes considerable effort and constant correction to make our paths straight!
All these preparations that need to be made can seem overwhelming. They can even become stressful, especially when we feel that we are failing or falling behind.
The beautiful fact, though, is that all these things are going to happen regardless of our preparations. If we don’t buy a single present, have no tree, and make no cookies, Christmas will still arrive and it will still signify the birth of our beautiful Savior.
My baby is not waiting in my womb until my checklist has been completed. He or she does not magically develop proportionately to my preparations.
Most importantly, though, our salvation has already been won, and our works of preparation are not based on a need to earn it.
Why do we do it then? Why do we put so much effort into preparations if they don’t cause these things to happen?
We are driven to action by love and by gratitude for these incredible blessings-- love for our children, love for our friends & family, and love for our Savior!
We put work into decorating, gift buying, and upholding traditions because we love both our family and friends and know the true reason for the season. We work in order to share this love we have.
We ready our homes and our lives for our children because we think about them constantly. We want good things for them! Our hearts are overflowing with love for them. We know we won’t be perfect parents, but they are such incredible gifts that we will strive to give our all and our best to them despite our shortcomings and inevitable failures.
We prepare our hearts for Christ’s coming because of the love we have for Him and the gratitude for His incredible sacrifice.
Take a few deep breaths when you are feeling weighed down by the preparations that need to be made and remember that you do not need to do anything at all to ensure these things will happen.
He has come, and He will come again.
There is no obligation, only gratitude and deep love for these incredible blessings.