Truly have a holiday filled with wonder.
Christmas is a season when, ideally, our spirits soar and our hearts expand. It’s an opportunity to celebrate–with parties, decorations, gifts, acts of love and special worship services. But, unfortunately, many of us get caught up in the rush and the pressure of the holiday season. When that happens, Christmas can seem more like a mad dash to the finish line than the reverent, expectant time it should be. Try these ideas to keep your Christmas happy and holy:
1. Discover the positive power of “no.”
It’s easy to find yourself getting overextended (even with good activities!) and losing sight of your true priorities. So this year, why not be more mindful about what you commit to? Learn the art of saying “no” and making careful, prayerful choices when it comes to your time and energy. “Walk in wisdom…redeeming the time” (Colossians 4:5).
2. Make someone else merry.
You probably won’t have to look very far this year to find someone who could use a little kindness and generosity. A lonely widow, a single mother, a local inmate. Helping to make someone else’s Christmas happy is sure to make you feel great, too. ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for Me” (Matthew 25:40).
3. Wait in wonder.
It’s hard to truly wait, to hope expectantly, when you are on the move. Advent is a time to commit to the wonder, to marvel at the coming of Christ into our world. Set aside some time to sit quietly, opening your mind and heart to this miracle. “Be still, and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10).
4. De-stress with the best book in the world.
Here are some Bible verses to commit to memory and repeat whenever you begin to feel tense.
• “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you” (John 14:27).
• “And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7).
• “Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).
This Christmas, say “yes” to what’s really important to you and a polite “no” to everything else. Look for ways to show kindness to people who need it. Remind yourself and your loved ones daily of the real reason why we celebrate: Christ has come to live among us. Hallelujah!