Holidays are holy days. Days set aside as special – more special than other days. The days before holidays are often far from holy. In attempts to make the holiday a holy day, the days leading up quickly become the exact opposite. The pre-event stress sets in as the meals are planned and houses cleaned. Homes are filled with people, more people than usual. As the routines are traded out for holiday planning frenzies maybe the turkey isn’t the only one who is getting a little warm.
It’s amazing the effort we will pour into making one day holy simply because it is the labeled as such on the calendar. It is amazing how many days we desecrate by stress and tense to-do lists in the attempts to make the one day special.
I am the largest advocate for traditional holiday celebrating that you will meet. I by no means am seeking 365 days of sameness. There are days that are to be celebrated, to be made special, to be set apart as holy. But what I am hungry for is the journey to those days to be seen also as holy in their own way. These days cannot be trampled on by the pressure of menu items to be cooked, houses to be cleaned, and tables to be set.
So how does this Wednesday before Thanksgiving find you? Don’t let your stress boil over as you try to keep the gravy from doing so. But it will surely spill out without a moment to pause this afternoon and to remember that as special tomorrow is, today also has a holiness of its own.
Join me during this midday rest to pause for five minutes. Take off your shoes, wiggle your toes in the carpet. The place where you are is holy ground. Before the table is set and the lists continue to be completed take a moment and wonder at the holiness. Perhaps take up a pen and scratch down the holiness that you see. The blessings that you count tomorrow are here now. Name ten of them today before moving on to the next thing on your to-do list.