Are You Tired of Christmas?
Only four days until Christmas! Yes, I still get excited about Christmas morning at 41 years of age, and I pray that I never, ever lose my Christmas spirit. In this ever-changing world, I know that many people have just gotten downright tired of Christmas, and some for good reason. My biggest prayer is for everyone to get the Christmas spirit back, and keep it!
Let me define “Christmas spirit” for you, in my own words: it’s a feeling of warmth, love, and peace that you cannot buy at a store or put in a box, and that can only come from the knowledge that Christ’s birth started a series of events that would save us all. It has nothing to do with presents, trees, Santas, or decorations. It has everything to do with LOVE.
The Birth of Jesus Christ Story
Yesterday’s message at church was right on. The pastor asked the question, “Are you tired of Christmas?” I know so many who are. I know that the birth of Jesus Christ story has not reached the ears of all of mankind, and some who have heard it have turned into something altogether different than it is. I know there are many who don’t believe in Jesus at all, or don’t believe He is the savior. It both frustrates me and scares me that so many people can celebrate this season without having Jesus in their hearts and on their minds. Does that mean I have to reject this special time that I love so much? Should I renounce Christmas because others celebrate it differently or take offense to the way I celebrate it? I say, absolutely not.
Yes, my family does put up a Christmas tree. We do wrap gifts and put them underneath that tree, and exchange them on Christmas morning. We do it in love, for the celebration of the birth of Jesus. I want my tree to be sparkly, twinkly, and covered in love, filled with the ornaments that are special to me and my family. With each ornament I hang, I thank God for sending our savior. I think of it as Jesus’s birthday tree, and all the other decorations I place are party decorations. Not ONE gift is opened before the birth of Jesus Christ story is read aloud from the Bible. He deserves it! Everyone may not think of it this way, but I do.
the sound of christmas
My absolute favorite Christmas moment is always our church Christmas program. It is an hour or two of worshiping the Lord through song, fellowship, and breaking bread together as a church family. I look forward to this every year, and I appreciate the work and love that each church member puts into this one special night. Jesus told us to love, and that’s exactly what we do. I love to sing and hear “Silent Night”, “O Beautiful Star of Bethlehem”, and “Joy to the World”. I love the special music from all kinds of people with all kinds of instruments that our church invites to play (this year we had a dulcimer group, which was so amazing).
I love that the youth at church get up and show off their stuff, whether it be piano, reading, singing, or trumpet (Pooh had a solo yesterday!!). Many around us may not do Christmas with a church family, but we do. It’s the epitome of love to me.
The sights of christmas
I absolutely love to look at Nativity scenes. Our church is displaying a large outdoor nativity scene this year, and it’s so wonderful. I adore the reminder of what Jesus’ birth was really like, and how vulnerable he and Joseph and Mary were.
That beautiful reminder of the humble beginning of our Lord just fills my heart with warmth and joy. I do marvel at how amazed Mary must have felt, and how brave she was. And how brave was Joseph, to enter into this with her? Their faith must have been through the roof to have willingly taken on this endeavor, and with joy in their hearts. As our pastor pointed out yesterday, God had been silent for 400 years when John the Baptist and Jesus came into the world…what a way to wake up the sleepy and open the eyes of the doubters! He sent us a savior, the Word in flesh. Everyone may not be filled with awe at the manger scene, but I am.
the tastes of christmas
I also adore sitting around a table, or my living room floor, with all of the people I love most in the world and a big ol’ plate of food, made with love. I love cooking, smelling, and tasting, but the tastes of Christmas are only perfected with my family around me. Spending that extra time with family for Christmas is such a huge gift! Sure, we’ve lost some loved ones through the years who I miss even more at Christmas time, but I know they would want me to enjoy Christmas as much as I always have! I know that those who have gone before us to the Heavenly kingdom are with us in spirit, and happy to see my family and me enjoying the season. I miss my Grandmother’s apricot crescents and her delicious chicken salad, but I miss my Grandmother more.
Having family around us is such a blessing, and the rare tense times always produce great stories to tell later. Not everyone has a family to celebrate with, which is all the more reason for us cherish family and the time we get to spend together over a meal. And I will be thankful for that! I will also be very thankful for the cookies, cakes, pies, dips, and various spreads of home-cooked food that we get to enjoy every Christmas season.
Are you tired of christmas?
Our pastor asked that question, “Are you tired of Christmas”, and even though I am not, I hear from a lot of people who are. The remedy that he suggested was simple. Take out your Bible and read Luke chapter 1, all 80 verses, slowly and deliberately. Don’t let the commercialized, loud, pushy “holiday” crowd ruin it for you! Read the gospel! Pray for the spirit to be in your heart, and enjoy what the season means to YOU! The world has corrupted much more than Christmas, and I refuse to let the world stamp down my faith, or ruin the celebration that I’ve looked forward to every year for the entirety of my life.
My encouragement is, don’t let yourself become tired of Christmas. Just make it yours, and celebrate it your way, while letting this crazy old world do it however it wants! Don’t let the negative destroy your positive! Celebrate, rejoice, and give thanks for all that we have been blessed with! Sing those Christmas carols! Spend what you want to spend, and nothing more, and if it helps you to have a lifted spirit, cut out gifts altogether! Cook the food you like, and put yourself in the company of those you love. Spend time with someone who needs a boost; invite someone lonely into your home to celebrate with you. Just don’t let the world spoil your Christmas, because I don’t think that’s what Jesus would do.
Happy Birthday, Jesus, and thank your for this season of love and fellowship.
Merry Christmas to you and yours, and may you be filled with joy, awe and wonder at the birth of Jesus this Christmas season!