Now that we’ve turned the calendar from October to November, it feels like the race to Christmas is on. The next two months will be filled with a myriad of ‘Christmas’ activities, personally and as a church. Between Christmas decorating and Christmas cards, Christmas shopping and Christmas parties, Christmas Blessing and Christmas Strolling, Christmas caroling and Christmas programs, we’ll arrive at the Christmas Eve Service before we can blink.
Which, that’s not all bad. All of those events and activities are inherently good. They all have the capacity to bring joy to our lives and the lives of others. But they also have the ability to produce massive amounts of stress and anxiety. These same events and responsibilities can both make or break our holiday season.
We must figure out how to do these two months well, or they’ll get away from us and ruin what should be a beautiful and meaningful time of year.
For me, the key to surviving this busy season is intentionality. The activities and events that inevitably await can overtake us if we don’t make conscious decisions about how to best wring blessing from Thanksgiving, Advent, and Christmas. We must reflect, converse, and make deliberate decisions about what we will do and not do, where we will travel and not travel, and how much we can handle or not handle. We may have to say ‘no’ to good things so that we can actually thrive (and not just survive) in this potentially significant season.
So, what’s important to you and your family? How much can you handle? Can you do everything? Do you need to say ‘no’ to some things? Are there certain events you need to skip, trips you need to cancel, or rituals you need to suspend in order to stay sane and really experience the blessing of this holiday season?
And if not, that’s fine too. If you can handle it all, awesome. But let’s make conscious decisions about how we will spend this impending season.
Let’s commit to being intentional about how we spend our time, money, and energy this year. Let’s be willing to make the hard decisions that need to be made. And let’s see if this holiday season can’t be the most significant and sacred one ever.