Being totally honest: there has been a lingering feeling in my heart that has been dreading Christmas. It’s not that I don’t want to spend time with my family and share the holidays and everything that goes with it, but the lack of CHRIST in Christmas has gone beyond some almost condemning bumper sticker or meme on Facebook for me. It’s been downright depressing.
The holidays should be about family and spending time with one another, as well as giving to one another, and I’m not disagreeing with that even in the slightest. But with two sets of divorced parents, multiple grandparents, and my daughter having to be with her dad and his girl friend and their families also… there’s a lot of family happening (not that that’s a bad thing!) and it has been a little overwhelming trying to schedule time with everyone.
Beyond that, so many family traditions and gifts to buy because we love one another and trying to be somewhat creative about our gift giving and still stay wise with our spending… and I’m sure you know how I feel.
And if I can add one more thing: raising a child to understand that Christ is the center of all of this in an environment where a majority of the people around my little one are constantly asking if she’s been good or bad for Santa to come (I have personal convictions about the good/bad thing: https://samfindsfaith.wordpress.com/2013/07/25/good-christian-bad-christian/ ). It’s been exhausting trying to keep the lies that surround the whole Santa deal to a minimum, while being able to appease everyone’s traditions with it, and not spoiling it for other children she comes into contact with who’s parents differ with what I believe.
On that note, it’s been exhausting trying to appease everyone. I’ve been so caught up this season in making sure everyone is taken care of, that I’ve neglected one very important thing: my Savior.
It’s not that I haven’t been praying and reading and continuing the search for God that I usually do… In fact, I’ve been doing a lot of searching for Him in this holiday. I’ve been looking to see Christ in Christmas… which brings me to the pinnacle of the point here, to what God just blessed my socks off with yesterday:
I was searching for Christ as if I would find Him “out there” in this Americanized, commercialized season. I was searching for His birth to be glorified and brought to the forefront of the holiday, or at least be a PART of it.
But He’s not in the world, because the world is not in Him. He won’t be found out there.
He’s found “in here,” in my heart… Where He has always asked to be sought and found….
So that I may carry Him into a world that doesn’t know they need Him.
I know I’m not alone. I’ve expressed my hearts lamentations to a few people who also follow the Lord who have expressed the same feelings. But seriously – take heart, brothers and sisters in Christ.
This world may not know Christmas…
Christ isn’t allowed to be a part of His own birthday. Saint Nicholas has been perverted from a follower of Jesus to an obese man creeping down chimneys. Gift giving has morphed from genuine generosity to an inflated and required way to “one up” each other or last year’s Christmas. Parents lie to their kids about Santa (no matter how you spin it, its lies) while telling them it’s all about being good girls and boys.
…but we do.
He is alive in the hearts of each and every one of His followers and it is a part of the redemptive plan of God that we are to take the gospel in to the world and share it.
Tell people the truth. Tell your kids the truth. Be Christ-like to people. Give generously, but humbly. Love on your family. Pray with and for your family. Let them SEE Christ in you by allowing the Light that He is SHINE.
One of the biggest mistakes I feel we have made is that we are so offended that He’s not a bigger part of the holiday He Himself established by His birth, that we wind up either depressed about it (or grumpy, Lord knows I’ve been that, too) or we wind up offending those around us.
We may celebrate differently, but let’s show the world what that celebration looks like!
Sing carols of praise together.
Say Grace over dinner.
Tell the story of the Nativity.
Share what you’re thankful for together.
With children, bake a birthday cake and decorate it for Jesus.
I don’t know – the options are limitless.
The Holy Spirit is a creative guy. Follow His leading this Christmas.
The world may not want Christ in Christmas, but what the world doesn’t realize is that Christ is in US.
He won’t be stopped and He doesn’t need defending. He’s already found His way in – US.
Allow Jesus to be the center of your heart, even if He’s not the center of your family’s tradition. Let His light shine through you and be the doorway He intended you to be to this world. That’s better than any gift you will give or receive this Christmas, is just to share Him and His love with those around you.
Have you been a little down this Christmas?
In what ways do you or would you like to share Christ with your family and friends this Chrsitmas?