The Present of Presence


Our holiday season got off to a rough start,
starting with Thanksgiving.

I planned to serve Thanksgiving dinner at 12:30. 
At noon, the turkey wasn’t close to cooked.

I’d calculated the cooking time,
the resting time,
the carving time,
so that everything would be hot and ready at the same time.


An hour went by and still that bird was not done!

Mashed potatoes and stuffing,
sweet potatoes and green been casserole
waited impatiently in warming ovens until 3:30
when that bird finally surrendered enough
breast meat to give each person a sliver.


Girls, it was the ugliest looking plate of food
I’ve ever served on Thanksgiving.
Tasty, but ugly.

Interestingly, holding dinner hostage gave us
all time to really catch up,
watch the Lions win,
play some board games with the littles
and some even took a short nap.

It was relaxed and fun for everyone but me!

I should all over myself.

I should have had more snacks.
I should have double checked the cooking time.
I should have made the turkey the day before.
I should never host a big party like this again.
And on and on.

The next day we got texts and calls from our guests
telling us what a wonderful time they had.

The fact that we served
shriveled veggies and crusty potatoes
didn’t matter.

the fact that I miscalculated the cooking time
by nearly 4 hours
escaped their attention
or the diversion of actual interaction was so appreciated
they’d forgotten about their rumbling tummies.

It was a great reminder that
we need the connection with each other
almost more than we need food.

I can get sustenance everywhere.
I can’t get an authentic connection just anywhere.

This holiday, take time to be present.
Really present.

Give yourself permission to
be a present
by being present.

Meet for coffee and lean in.
Sit in front of a fire and chat about things that matter.
Make eye contact.
Listen actively.

Put the phones away and be fully present.

We all long to be noticed.
To be heard.
To be connected.

2000 years ago,
Jesus came to the earth to be with us.
What a difference he made in our lives!

His present was and is his presence.

What would it take to get reconnected the with Savior this season
so you’d have the reserves to share your time with others?

Oh, Girlfriend,
it’s so worth waking up 10 minutes earlier,
or going to bed a few minutes later
or spending a little bit of your lunch break
with God to be refreshed and revived
to face the busyness of this season.

When you’ve been recharged  by God,
it’s pretty easy to choose to be present
with others.

Your present of presence is great for friendships,
and just as applicable
for marriages and grown kids.

This season,
let’s not get so carried away with the
cooking and
cleaning and
and gift buying
that we don’t have time to be present.

Give the present of your presence!

Who’s in?

Merry Christmas

Scripture Refresher: And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.   Luke 2:8-11


  1. Elise Case on December 16, 2016 at 4:41 am

    Love it, thanks Robyn perfect timing.

  2. Pat Waldroup on December 16, 2016 at 11:01 am

    Thanks so much for such a great reminder for this time of year. We get so tied up in preparation for the season that we cease to treasure the Reason as much as we should!!

  3. Susan D. Fennig on December 16, 2016 at 12:04 pm

    Getting so caught up in the preparations does take the joy out of the season. We need to remember that we are making these preparations for our family & friends’ enjoyment & when we are done we need to interact with our family & friends to enjoy them. The interaction with the people in our lives is more important & will be remembered longer than all of the other things. Sometimes when our plans go awry that will be the most remembered holiday or party & people will say do you remember ….. I also agree that cell phones should be put away.

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