I want to be intentional about Christmas so we are not swept away in the commercialism
It is the first day of Advent, the season of Christmas. Wanting to start new traditions it has taken me a while to decide on what we are going to do. I want to be intentional about Christmas so we are not swept away in the commercialism. However it has taken me ages to decide upon what will be included and has meant that ‘Unwrapping the Greatest Gift’ by Ann Voskamp is in the post – we were supposed to start reading it today!
Our messy families – messy houses and messy humanity – feel like a stark contrast to the perfect ‘Peace on Earth’ happy families
It would be so easy for me to feel defeated by Christmas. Maybe Christmas snuck up on me because I am not a fan of Christmas. There are many dates in December that evoke negative emotions due to past memories. Our messy families – messy houses and messy humanity – feel like a stark contrast to the perfect ‘Peace on Earth’ happy families that are suppose to celebrate Christmas. The beautiful Christmas trees and constant positivity sets an expectation, so much in contrast, that makes me feel even more messy. Even more unable to embrace Christmas.
Instead I think back to a messy unplanned journey to a town where there was no place to stay, meaning a baby needed to be born in a stable. Birth is not exactly clean and I am not exactly sure what happened to that Placenta. There is nothing straight forward about that story. St Nicholas lost both his parents and spent time in prison – if that is not a messy life I am not sure what is.
That every time our messy juxtaposes with Peace on Earth we are reminded that we can have internal peace and external messy
What if instead of feeling depressed and defeated by our messy families this Christmas we embraced them and accepted that Christmas is as much about messy as it is about Peace on Earth. That every time our messy juxtaposes with Peace on Earth we are reminded that we can have internal peace and external messy. It’s not about being good to receive presents, or preforming to some expectation.
…there will be days in December that evoke negative emotions. On those days I can seek internal Peace
This year I am intentionally going to accept that Christmas is as much messy as Peace on Earth-y. That Advent doesn’t have to be perfect as long as it helps me remember to be still, focus and rest. I don’t have to commit to 25 days of Advent ‘doing’ unless it feels authentic to me. I can start reading my Advent book a week late and it will be ok. That until my new traditions create personal excitement, there will be days in December that evoke negative emotions. On those days I can seek internal Peace. I can embrace Christmas. I can embrace messy.
Let us not run from Christmas this year because someone wants us to take on an expectation. Let us embrace an authentic messy Christmas, that is sometimes confusing and painful because we can use that messy painful to help us refocus on family, thankfulness, gratitude and peace one intentional step at a time.