Every year I reflect on December, and every year I come up short.
I’m not a crafty mom, a creative mom, or even a very organized mom. My husband works shift work, and consistency with schedules has always been hard for us as a family. I’m not a great decorator, although my decorations are deeply meaningful to me, and this year, our Christmas tree stood up with lights only for a full three weeks waiting until the time my whole family was home at the same time with enough energy to decorate it. I’ve just never been able to make Christmas as magical as I remember it as a child. My children don’t complain, but I often leave December feeling like I didn’t get it right.
Maybe you can relate? Maybe you:
- Didn’t focus on Christ enough.
- Focused too much on getting instead of giving.
- Didn’t make it to church.
- Didn’t play family games.
- Didn’t do a Christmas craft every day to point your kids to Jesus.
- Didn’t read a Christmas devotional – yourself OR to your kids.
- Didn’t even read the Christmas story on Christmas morning.
Yesterday, I had a few minutes alone to reflect on our Christmas. I’m reading a book right now that’s set during the American Revolution, and I started thinking about how our Christian ancestors, people who lived many years ago, might’ve kept Christmas. Before they had the internet, Pinterest, access to endless books and emails, or influencers telling them what they need to do to make sure they get enough Jesus in Christmas…what did THOSE people do?
I don’t know the answer to that, and I didn’t take the time to research it for this article. What I believe is that Christmas was probably way less of a big deal, even to Christians, than it is now.
- I am not saying it’s wrong to pick one day (or one month) to celebrate the birth of our Savior.
- I’m not saying it’s wrong to give gifts, be together, and enjoy special music and lights, and all the other things that go with an American Christmas.
- I’m not saying that Christmas devotions, or Advent calendars, or crafts designed to point our families to Christ are wrong, or that you shouldn’t do them.
I’m saying I think how we keep Christ on all the other days of the year is more important.
If we ONLY focus on keeping Christ at Christmas, we have a WAY bigger problem than feeling a bit let down over a lack of magic in December. Following Christ isn’t magic. It isn’t always even pleasant. It isn’t always holy and jolly, or merry and bright. Sometimes, it’s downright hard.
So mom, the way you keep Christ in your day-to-day life…the way you teach your kids to see their ordinary lives through the lens of Scripture…the time you spend with them, pouring Jesus into them January through November…THAT is what’s most important…and you haven’t messed that up.
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