Santa isn’t the only one making his list and checking it twice.  These days, I’m always having to make a list for the good, the bad, and the ugly and try to prioritize it.  As the days in the year grow shorter, my lists just seem to grow longer.  Actually, most of us are rather fond of lists, Top Ten’s, Oscar Nominees, Best Christmas Cookie recipes.  All in all, it’s a good thing.

Apparently, our Creator also felt lists were worthwhile.  After all, He gave us those ten ways to behave and live successfully back in Exodus 20.  He didn’t want us slip sliding through our days not knowing what was expected or what we could do to make things better.  Yes, that’s a good list.  Of course, Jesus realized that most of us have pretty short memories, so he cut to the chase and adjusted the list down to just two really essential items, “Love God” and “Love Your Neighbor” because those were messages we could text or repeat or bring to mind any time at all.  So, that was a good list.

There’s virtually no end to the list making opportunity, and so my thought today is for you to create your own “naughty” and “nice list.”  Chances are you don’t have much, if anything on your “naughty” list.  However, if you can recall anyone this past year that you haven’t quite forgiven, or you can imagine any opportunity to volunteer, but you just haven’t done that either, or even those moments where you promised to pray for someone, but you forgot, then take a look at your list and check it twice so you can start the New Year with fresh joy and energy.

Clearly, your NICE list is going to be overwhelming.  You do so much for others that it will be hard to prioritize that list too, but to this one I might add, “Be NICE to yourself.”  Put yourself on your list and give yourself a few moments to just breathe easily, rejoice in prayer, sing from the heart and find the balance of life even for a few moments.  If you do, your whole Christmas season will continue to make you merry and bright.

The best thing to remember is that when it comes to having God’s love and grace and guidance, you’re at the TOP of his list.  Today, take a moment and offer a little extra thanks that you’re always on His favorites list, whether you’re “naughty” or “nice.”   How do I know?  The Bible tells me so!

Oh, and you’re on my Favorites list too.

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