The Gift of Interruption
It’s seven days before THE DAY! My mind is making lists of all that still needs to be accomplished before Christmas Day arrives, but my body is still recovering from surgery and telling me to slow down.
This surgery has interrupted the way I typically do life at Christmas — BUSY.
Interruptions are by nature an uninvited guest, especially this time of year.
I like to have my day planned out with a list that I can methodically check off. But the Christmas story is all about the greatest interruption.
- The Father interrupted His Son’s comfortable existence and sent Him to earth as a baby. He temporarily left His position next to His father to arrive on Earth as a helpless infant.
- Mary’s life was interrupted by the angel Gabriel to receive the astonishing news that she would be with child. She lost her reputation, the excitement of preparing for a traditional Jewish wedding, the trust of her fiancé’ (temporarily), and living a normal life.
- Joseph’s life was also interrupted by an angel, confirming that the child Mary was carrying was not his own, but the son of the Most High God. Because he chose not to abandon Mary, Joseph’s reputation suffered. He even lost the right to name his firstborn son after himself, a special honor in his Jewish culture.
Interruptions are often accompanied by loss. It may be as simple as the inability to complete a task or as devastating as the death of a loved one.
When interruptions happen in my life, my response leans toward anger and frustration. As I contemplate the response Jesus, Mary, and Joseph gave to their interrupted life, I am challenged.
Each of them said Yes to having their lives interrupted. Knowing it wouldn’t be easy, they chose to trust God with their interruption because they remembered His faithfulness and chose to trust the Father.
Our lives were interrupted almost three years ago, when the Lord asked us to say Yes to leaving the pastorate, a large salary, and a way of life we had known for over 35 years to join Life Action Ministries. Now we travel all over the United States calling others to give their Yes to God. At times I miss my own bed and seeing my grandchildren as much as I used to. I often wake up not knowing even what state I am in, yet I am blessed to see God healing marriages, families, and changing lives for eternity.
I can almost guarantee you that in the next week, God will attempt to interrupt you. It may be a small child who needs some attention; it may be your spouse who needs to feel prioritized over your daily tasks and wrapping up Christmas. Or it could be someone who has never seen the Christmas story lived out in someone’s life.
God is looking for those who are willing to be interrupted. He is looking for someone to say Yes to Him and no to their typical to-do list. When you’re faced with the interruption, stop and thank the Lord for it as a gift. Watch and see what He will do!