It is shameful that Christmas is all about what I want. Um, cuz I want a lot. You know. Stuff. Yes, I want world peace, to end world hunger, to save a tree. But then I see this amazing bag...
I'm just saying.
So once again I will be honest. So join me as I lay myself bare, birthday suit style. I shall put it all out there in its hideous glory. See, Christmas tends to make me lose sight of what the season is all about and focus on what the season has BECOME all about...for me. Liiiiiiike...
Decorations. Gifts. Busyness. Stress. Crowds. Cookies. Eating the cookies. Baking more cookies. Mean people who suck. Having tendencies of being mean and people saying I suck. Shopping (which I love). Shopping for other people (don't love as much). Struggling to understand wreaths and bows on the grille of a car. Higher electric bill. Hearing bells at every store I enter and wanting to stop and explain how I emptied my change at the last store, all my paper money is gone, and it really does not make sense for me to drop my plastic in the red bucket full of jingly coins yet I don't say anything because then it looks like I am making excuses. (Breathe) Muttering about the middle row of lights that went out on the tree and not being able to find the faulty bulb to replace it. 78 degree weather in December. Buying a Christmas outfit that is not too Christmas-y because I will want to wear it again without someone saying, "Didn't you wear that at Christmas?" Planning to lose weight after it's all over yet indulging in a last hoorah and gaining 8 extra pounds. I am sick and I am sick and tired of being sick. We have no family nearby and it makes me sad. I can not find the Christmas stockings I envision anywhere and the telepathic messages I am sending to every Etsy shop is getting scrambled in the transmission. Waking at 5 am on Black Friday. Other sales I miss out on. Coveting the things I want but can't have...
So is it any wonder that I have a bit of an attitude? But really, let's be honest. I bring it on myself as I dwell on all things that truly do not matter. And as I sit and meditate on all that God has done to fill my life up to overflowing, the fog begins to clear and the peace descends upon me like a sweet, Christmas promise...
I have a husband who has made me feel loved every waking moment of our marriage.
I have two daughters who delight me and who are such blatant miracles that they prove undeniably a God who is intimately mindful of me.
When I look at people all around me and see other people with intricate lives filled with love, pain, joy, hope, mistakes, forgiveness, fear...I realize the foolishness of my daily irritations and inconveniences these people may cause.
I cherish the friendships that enrich my life with encouragement, laughter, and incredible loyalty.
I see that I live in a place that can be enjoyed all year long outdoors.
I discover that giving is soooo much better than receiving.
I realize that I am more fortunate than most and my financial complaints are born of pettiness and discontent.
Decorations, stockings, shopping, and gifts pale in comparison to sitting on the floor with my girls having a dress up tea party and giggling about the fake pasta Cati just made me to go with my tea.
Wreaths and bows on car grilles are attempts at being festive and I really should just go buy a Christmas sweater...um, no.
And most importantly of all...Christmas is about the birth of my Savior Jesus Christ. A Savior who saved me from a self-made pit that one day I will share with you. I love how God has changed my life, is continually transforming me, and each day I want to thank Him with this life He gave me. At times, my offering of self is rather paltry but God is merciful, full of grace, abounding in love.
I have a God who loves me, enough to die for me, and if I focus on a season where I love the people around me, I clearly can see fathomless beauty in the midst of my Christmas woes.