Great Plains Daily Devotional for 12/26/2020

Today please be in prayer for

Milford UMC
Blue River District
Lincoln Newman UMC
Blue River District
Lincoln Northeast UCC
Blue River District
Cheney, NE UMC
Palmyra UMC
Blue River District

Today's Lectionary Text


John 14:27

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid.

Today's Devotional

This year for Christmas I am lucky enough to have Christmas eve and the day after Christmas off of work. Ever since the semester has ended I have been keeping myself very busy and stressed between my retail job and the new position I have at school. While also stressing about next semester plans, money, getting gifts for people, and so on. With all of this it is safe to say that I have had much of a break during this year’s Winter break. Because of this and also the fact that I get to spend a decent amount of time at home with my family for Christmas this year, I have decided to leave my work behind for a little while. And by leave behind I mean literally leave it behind.

While I am away from Emporia and back in my hometown with my family for a few days I will be leaving everything I have that could possibly make me want to work while I’m at home. This means leaving my laptop behind so that I cannot create, read, or respond to any emails, and so that I can’t allow myself to do any research or digital organization. I will also be leaving my iPad in Emporia so that I can also not reach my emails, and so that I cannot let myself do any work for the school on my Procreate app either. In addition to leaving these devices behind I will also be shutting off my email notifications on my phone (since I am not ready to be without it for that long). I will also probably have almost all of my notifications off.

I am doing this, not only to force myself to take a break, but to also make sure I am giving my family and friends the attention they deserve this holiday season. I am always making myself so busy and I never let myself have a break, I feel like I have to always be working on or towards something. This way of thinking often leads me to neglect the ones I love. Leaving my gadgets behind and turning my notifications off will hopefully let me spend some much needed quality time with my loved ones.

The only items I will be bringing home with me this Christmas are:
  1. Clothing - mostly Christmas sweaters
  2. Phone - because I’m 20 and can’t stand the thought of doing a two hour drive without Spotify
  3. The Land of Stories: The Enchantress Returns by Chris Colfer - something light and easy to read
  4. Making Sense of the Bible: Rediscovering the Power of Scripture Today by Adam Hamilton - getting a head start on the UMCM winter reading
  5. Laundry - that I’ll beg my lovely mother to do for me
  6. Presents for my family - wrapped with more love than skill
I hope my writing today can inspire someone else who feels like me to put the work down and just relax. I know that it is easier said than done, but come on! It’s Christmas! Your loved ones need more than work does.

I also hope that everyone has a safe holiday season, wear your mask, keep your distance. Things have been very crazy this year but 2020 is almost over and we can all hope for a better 2021. Remember to turn off notifications and tune into the world around you.
Have a blessed holiday season!
Merry Christmas!!
Laney Smith
Emporia State Campus Ministry


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