A Holy Pause {Prepare My Heart for the Holidays}

Welcome to Day 1 of Prepare My Heart for the Holidays, an 8-day heart-boosting prayer experience! Weekdays from today through December 8th.


What if, at the very brink of the Christmas crazy, before we drag out boxes of tangled lights, sift through the ornaments, and tenderly unpack nativity sets, we allow ourselves the luxury of a holy pause? What if instead of allowing the briskness of the season to scoot us forward on its endless current, we stopped and bowed our hearts before the One who stepped out of heaven, in awe and wonder of all He has done? 

What if we lifted to Him the issues that concern us and often steal tiny bits of joy from our hearts during the holidays? What if we allowed our hearts to marvel at the Lord’s unfathomable journey from eternity into an unassuming, most unroyal manger? What if we pondered the miracle of His birth and the reason behind it? What if we asked Him to fill our hearts to overflowing with the reality of the priceless gift of His presence?

And what if that made all the difference? What if making time to be with the One Christmas is all about changed the very atmosphere of our hearts, making this season more peaceful and joy-filled than ever?

Here’s the challenge: Let’s make the decision to engage in a holy pause each day this holiday season and pray about issues that concern our hearts this time of year. 

A simple pause. 

An exquisite shift of perspective, as we lift to Him the burdens and expectations and issues of our hearts, and we can then experience more of His amazing presence...and that changes everything. It changes us!

Ready? 

{A Holy Pause to Pray}

Lord,

You are awesome and mighty, and I bow my heart before You. Lord, I always long to be near You, but I especially long to experience meaningful moments with You all throughout the Christmas crazy.

Please help me to make time for a daily holy pause all throughout the holidays, so that my heart can relax and focus on You…so that I am not overwhelmed, stressed, scowling, or cranky. Lord, shift my perspective. Change the atmosphere of my heart and fill me with Your peace and joy.

Help me to lift my burdens to You daily. Help me ponder Your willingness to step out of heaven to walk on earth, recognizing that You don’t always do things the way we might expect, as Your humble birth proves. Help me to turn my heart toward You in the good and stressful moments. Thank you for filling my heart with Your abundant, overflowing love, Your grace, and Your peace. In the precious name of Jesus, Amen.


GIVEAWAY: On December 8. I will randomly choose 2 WINNERS who will each receive a signed copy of BOTH of my books, some super cute, unique Christmas cards courtesy of Smiling Sticks, and a few other goodies. 
TO ENTER please leave a comment and include your email (so I can notify you if you win). 
Winner will be notified via email on December 8th. So sorry, contest open to continental U.S. residents only. 

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55 comments:

Anonymous said...

Yes, this is what we need. To pause and know that He is God and to let His peace settle through our whole being. I am so looking forward to each day. Thank you for your ministry! Cherie K. bck4045@hotmail.com

Linda Harris said...

Thank you for planting this idea to take time each day to pause and pray. We really do have to be intentional about this all year through

Renee Gallion said...

I concur a "holy pause" each day is so needed to keep perspective on the true reason for the season.

shannan williams said...

I love this Julie! I actually started doing something similar to this yesterday. I am starting to journal daily with a friend. Yesterday was the first day and it was so relaxing! I never take time for myself like that and it really was wonderful. Also I love the prayer you shared with us today. Oh and thank you for the chance at the giveaway. My email is shannanlee126@yahoo.com

Kathy Mulhair said...

What a great way to start my day! Thank you
Mkmulhair@gmail.com

westernrose55 said...

What a beautiful habit -- holy pauses! Easier to see God when we aren't running so fast and everything is a blur.

Anonymous said...

I cried when I read this! Thank you, Lord for your perfect timing! Remind me all throughout the month ahead to take a ho!y pause whenever I feel overwhelmed. I need Thee every hour - no! EVERY MOMENT!!! (Donna.madden154@gmai!.com)

Unknown said...

Amen and Amen!!! I am sharing that wonderful pause thought ..... Beautiful!
Blessings,
Tracey
tkirch@gmail.com
Tracey Kirch

Jacklyn said...

Thank you for sharing! A much needed pause in my morning!

Marge Michulsky said...

ahhhh, a holy pause. sooo needed

Alexbelle said...

Oh My! Thank you for for sharing this reminder of what is truly important this season. It can be difficult to not get caught up in the rush and get all frazzled. Amen for a reprieve in His Holy presence. Sharing this right now!

Alexbelle said...

Oops! I forgot to share my email, lol. Alexandraencarnacion0305@gmail.com. Thank you again for the prayer you shared! Many blessings to you sister!

Tam said...

Amen! Merry Christmas!
augustasec@yahoo.com

Marshatennant@yahoo.com said...

Thank you for reminding us of the magic of pausing in the season.

Mary Hardin said...

Thank you for putting the thoughts of my desires to pause and be quiet with God as I move through each day that insists on having my attention. When we take the time to pause, we are not only being blessed by our Lord and Savior but we get spread that blessing to others as well. Mary

Mhardin62@yahoo.com

Casey said...

Perfect timing Julie. I needed a sweet nudge to take the Holy pause to pray today. Looking forward to tomorrows nudge.
Jeremiahfarm@gmail.com

Jane McEwen said...

Struggling to find happiness this holiday season. Focusing on the real reason because the worldliness isn't working this year. Strange how loss never seems to go away and it roars to the forefront so unexpectedly. Thank you for your book Prayers for a Woman's Soul. It has pulled me up many times. janeannmc@gmail.com

Cheryl W said...

Thank you for this great reminder of what Christmas is all about my Saviours birth. And your prayers seem to be reaching right into mine and finding the words that I seem to find hard to find. God bless you

A Journey For Life said...

Yes, yes that prayer!! Count me in! jenn56093 @ yahoo.com

RMiski said...

I love the articles you send. I am in need of peace this Christmas season. There are so many stressors in my life right now, and Jesus is the one I turn to for help. Holidays are especially hard, and I would love to find the happiness again.

Nicci Ramirez said...

"An exquisite shift of perspective, as we lift to Him the burdens and expectations and issues of our hearts, and we can then experience more of His amazing presence...and that changes everything. It changes us!"

LOVE this!!!! Thank you so much!!!

Nicci Ramirez
Nationwidenicci@aol.com

Sharmin Ridenour said...

Charminsharmim2@gmail.com

Thank you and God bless

Joan Dean said...

This really touched my heart this morning. Thank you for your blog. I have dreaded the holiday business and need to refocus. Added to my daily walk and bible study - I love the idea of a holy pause!

ladyannie8 said...

Thank you for your heart and your willingness to put into words what our hearts need to hear.

Lora Satterfield said...

Your blog Always touch me and say exactly what I am feeling or apply to my life or situation so well. Love this blog for pausing and Taking Quiet Time each day during holidays. Thank you for this helping hand to do that.
Lorasat@att.net

Trusting in Him said...

Thank you for reminding me to take a holy pause during this season and everyday.

tstew said...

Thank you for the reminder to Be still and knew that I am God. tstew56@yahoo.com

Cheryl Barker said...

Makes all the difference as we take time for Him, doesn't it? Thanks for the great giveaway, Julie!
ckbarker at gmail dot com

Anonymous said...

thank you, Julie, for the prayer to refocus on spending time with Him...instead of being frustrated by all that needs to be done. Prayers for His Peace and Joy and Love to be in your days/nights. bcf327@yahoo.com

Jane Dean said...

I so needed this today! Thank you from the bottom of my heart! Going to the feet of Jesus right now....that was all I needed. jane@ggc.org

Ellen said...

Oh how I needed this righ5 now! I am really struggling with loss and depression. I need to take th3 focus off myself and my losses and focus on Him alone! He is enough, I jus5 need reminding! Theank you for this beautiful post and prayer, you do t know how much its appreciated.
Ellie

Ellen said...

Forgive all the typos!

Kristin said...

The season has barely started and already I've been concerned that I won't make the most of Christmas time, but will become frazzled and stressed. I will definitely take time to pause - thanks for the encouragement!

kharwell [at] gmail [dot] com

sturner52@northstate.net said...

I'm so looking forward to this to keep me focused as we start into the Christmas season.
Sharon

Anonymous said...

This devotion comes at a very good time. Thank you for taking the time to do this. Your prayers always seem to touch what is going on in my life. galeeley@hotmail.com

Bwiley357@yahoo.com said...

Thank you for this giveaway! Praying that the Christmas season is a little less stressful for me this year! Beverly (bwiley357@yahoo.com)

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this post. It is so easy to be overwhelmed by what needs to be done that we forget about God. Thanks for the idea of a Holy pause. Vengeful_fairie@yahoo.com

kelly said...

Thank you for sharing and reminding us what our focus should be. I am looking forward to a more meaningful Christmas Season. You are very gifted!!
klhowerton@sbcglobal.net

Tallulah Jane said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Terry Kiesling said...

Love love love your spirit. Your work. Your heart. Your worship. Your writing. Your prayers. You!!
dashey66@gmail.com

Ann said...

What a much needed post, thank you!

Dora Tovar said...

With such a busy world we live in we definitely need a Holy Pause to Pray! Blessings! Dora dltovar67@gmail.com

Melissa said...

Julie, thank you for helping us keep our hearts in the place, on Jesus, and his undeserving gift of grace to us. It is so easy during this crazy but wonderful time of the year to get our focus off of Him, so I am looking forward to your daily emails to remind me to take a holy pause. May you have a blessed Christmas.

Heather Mulder said...

Thank-you for this great opportunity to pause and come before our Father during this busy time.

Janice said...

Thank your for this great reminder to stop and pause during this crazy time of year. I want to start each day during this season,pausing and coming before my Father.

jmrs1010 said...

Thank you for the opportunity. And for the encouragement to stop and meditate on the Glorious reason we celebrate Christmas.

Staci R. said...

Thank you for reminding us of what's most important. I always start my Bible in a year readings around this time. How awesome to know that The Star Breather, our God, is bigger than we can ever comprehend & that He chose to come to earth so that we may have a relationship with Him! So very thankful! ♡

Tracey said...

Thank you for the reminder or stopping to pause each day!

mortleyp21@gmail.com said...

Thank you for the opportunity to stop and pause a little more each day!

savvygirl65 said...

I like to take a walk in the local park and just engage with God's wonderful nature.
Sherri J

Diana said...

I just lost my father so the reminder to stop and pause is so helpful especially with the grief. Blessings Diana

Tressie said...

I could not sleep and stumbled upon this beautiful Prayer. Thank you so much! I will pause each day just to enjoy HIM. Merry Christmas!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for the daily prayer . My heart really needed this . I want to remember the reason for this season everyday and this will help focus my head and my heart so that I can be a better child of God but also a better mom and wife . Amelia@igoins.com

Anonymous said...

I love this idea!! Setting a reminder in my phone for the same time every day to experience my Holy pause. Thank you for sharing!!
Ashleyyanneee@gmail.com

Anita Marble said...

My holy pause is in the morning, essential as coffee!!!
Anita.r.marble@gmail.com

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