Sarah Markley
About the Author

I'm the mother of two little girls, the wife of an amazing husband who'd rather play the guitar than anything else and I love to write. I spend my weekends watching my daughters ride horses and play soccer. I blog daily and my greatest wish is to see women healed...

(in)side DaySpring: things we love
& you will too!
Find more at
(in)side DaySpring:
things we love
& you will too!
Find more at
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Reader Interactions


  1. Sarah,
    Those darned expectations…they get us every time. And, you are so right that we build our expectations around the wrong things. This might sound like an oxymoron, but this Christmas I am really fighting for the opportunity to be still. I’ve made it a priority to schedule time to just be still…to sit with my java and gaze at my tree and read my Advent devotional and put my ornaments on my Jesse tree…just me and Jesus. I have to say it’s the best Christmas gift I’ve ever given myself. Yes, I’ve had to let some things go in order to do it…but what am I really letting go of? Thank you for some great reminders on how to not only survive, but thrive this Christmas!

  2. Thank you, Sarah, for your wise suggestions at the end of your post. Number 5 especially resonated in my heart. Just this morning I almost skipped my quiet time, knowing that God would understand the tyranny of the urgent. But I am SO glad I fought that urge. This morning I read about hope. That if we just show up and try to do the right thing, the dawn will come (Anne LaMott). Just the word of encouragement I needed. Then, #6 of your suggestions brought tears to me eyes. Oh, yes, I want to live expectantly! Come, Lord Jesus. And, thank you, again, Sarah.

  3. Thank you for the reminder of how “expectations” bring us frustration more often than they bring satisfaction. This Holiday season is full of hardship for our family. I am truly having to make an effort at enjoying the season at all. But because I have Jesus I know I have everything I need! I do need to “expect Him” though and not let Satan rob me of those many sightings He has for me each day!

    • Teresa,

      Prayers for you and your family this Christmas! May God shower blessings upon your family beyond what you expect! I pray God will swoop down and put His wings around you for a great big hug!


      Please help Teresa and her family this Christmas! Bless them immensely and take away some hardships for them! Shower them with your love and grace!



  4. Beautiful, Sarah. And how wonderful to get to visit Ireland. It’s one of those places I’ve always wanted to visit. 🙂

    Thanks for the reminder—the permission—to let go of expectations of perfection and “doing” to make the right kind of Christmas. I’ve been working hard this season to just breathe and be still before Jesus. Some things haven’t happened. I’m still working on getting Christmas letters out. My kids haven’t served the less fortunate. We haven’t done a ton as a family. But we are working to remember Jesus is Who we celebrate. To make memories our boys will take with them into adulthood.

    Thanks for the exhortation to let Jesus surprise me. Loved that!

  5. Sarah, I love your reminder to find time to be still each day. The Christmas season is so hectic and too often we rush from activity to activity without taking time to connect with the One who made it all possible!

  6. Sarah – My favorite part is when you said “let go of what you think Christmas SHOULD be.” Yes, yes, yes. Thanks for the reminder!

  7. How ironic that I should read this article this morning! Just last night I was sharing with my husband the internal struggle I was experiencing over unmet expectations. Thank you Sarah for the great reminders of “letting go”. God’s blessings on you and your sweet family this Christmas!

  8. Sarah,

    Great post about slowing down and being still expecting Jesus! It can be hard in our hectic chaotic go go go world! Sometimes we just need to stop and be still–shut out the noise and din of the world!!

    This Christmas is super different for me in many ways! My aging father moved into assisted living and has had numerous health issues–including 4 trips to ER. It seems hard not to go get him and bring him to Christmas dinner with family–that would be to difficult. Many emotions abound in my heart this year.

    My prayer is that my hubby and I can sit and expectantly wait for Jesus to come and realize the importance and true meaning of Christmas!

    Blessings 🙂

  9. Love you Sarah!! What an amazing memory that was 🙂 Sincerely hope we can share our beautiful country with you again soon. until then, may all your Christmases be Ireland…until you come back!