"I hate Christmas!"
I admit that several years ago, I said these three words out loud. Talk about a holiday heresy! A good Christian woman is just not supposed to say these three words. After my momentary outburst, I realized that I don’t really hate Christmas. In fact, there are several things that I love about Christmas –
So, what could have ever possessed me to say those three awful words - “I hate Christmas!?” One word: stress! Stress that comes from the self-imposed pressure to meet expectations. Expectations created based on:
I don’t know about you, but I have learned that if I want to honor God and bless others this season – to have a meaningful and merry Christmas instead of committing a holiday heresy - I need to examine some of my perceived expectations, such as:
Family gatherings should feel good and be enjoyable!
Christmas traditions should be upheld every year.
Christmas celebrations should include numerous gifts
and celebrations that are elaborate.
Feeling overwhelmed yet? Me too!
I think that honoring God and blessing others at Christmas involves examining my perceived expectations in light of the truth – those godly principles that apply to every day of the year, regardless of the season or the expectations that come from my own thoughts or from other people.
Even in the midst of “peace on earth, goodwill towards men”,
difficult people will still be who they are!
And remember that, sometimes, we can be difficult to deal with as well!
Be loving and love the unlovely in light of reality.
“Do to others as you would have them do to you.”
Remember the old “holiday traditions” but realize that people and circumstances change.
Examine and adjust yesterday’s traditions to today’s realities because,
“There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under the heavens.”
Even in the “season of giving” there are still only 24 hours in a day
and money still does not grow on trees.
Use wisdom and prayer in determining expenditures
of time, energy and money and,
“…give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”
(2 Corinthians 9:7)
I feel better already and am looking forward to merry and meaningful Christmas celebrations!
How about you? How are you doing in these last few weeks before we celebrate Christmas? What do you feel is expected of you this Christmas season? Are your perceptions about your expectations based on the truth? What needs to change so that you can authentically honor God, bless others and have a meaningful and Merry Christmas?
About the author:
Hello! My name is Ginger Hill and I am a Christ follower and a wellness professional. Over the years, I have personally and professionally seen the benefits of healthy living and I have also seen the hardships of struggling to practice good health habits in the midst of a busy and sometimes stressful life. I am passionate about helping myself and others to live a healthy lifestyle and I believe that good health is essential in helping us to do the good works that God has called us to do. Because I am a work in progress, I write these blog posts to encourage myself and I share them with others in the hope that they may be encouraged as well.
Psalm 92:12,14 (NLT)
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