12.08.2011

How We Stole Christmas...from Ourselves

I've talked to a lot of people in the last few days who are having a hard time getting into the Christmas spirit this year. I have sent more than one email to my mom joking about my internal "Grinch" running amok and running my attitude this year. I really don't know what it is, at all. The Christmas tree is up and lit. The lights are hung outside. The stockings are hung, the decorations are out. I even have a new Charlie Brown Christmas decoration to make me smile. I love it, but it just doesn't feel like I usually do this time of year.

There is simply something about Christmas that is supposed to be full of joy and laughter and simple joys. It is supposed to be about family and friends and relaxing around the lighted Christmas Tree. It's about a promise of a Savior and eternity reclaimed from the darkness. It's about all the things that we take for granted. It's about slowing down and enjoying the things we love. It's about warmth and happiness.

But, somewhere along the way, the Grinch seemed to win. People fight over toys in the store. We argue with family and stress over making plans that will inevitably leave someone disappointed. We work longer hours to make more money to buy more stuff when that's the last thing anyone really needs. We pick fights that don't need to happen and we stress about things that, in the long run, don't even matter. We spend too much time figuring out where to put the nativity scene without ever really looking at that baby in the manger and the promises He holds.

We have lost Christmas. And, I think years of the realy meanning of Christmas being chipped away have finally caught up with me.

So, I'm taking a deep breath.
Taking Christmas one day at a time.
Realizing I will disappoint people.
Realizing I will be disappointed.
I'm looking for the little joys.
And celebrating the Child that changes everything.
I am not forcing myself to "get" in the Christmas spirit.
Instead I am allowing Christmas to come to me however it wants to come.
I am turning on the Christmas lights and drinking hot chocolate.
I am wrapping presents.
I am trying not to stress so much to find the PERFECT gift.
I am focusing on being with people instead of buying things for people.

I am trying to find Christmas again.

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