A Peace Filled Christmas

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Sunday, December 14, 2014 0 comments

by Ami Samuels

The holiday season is a time of year that our senses come alive. Beautiful lights adorn our houses while Christmas trees and candles fill our homes with vibrant color and light. We hear Christmas music in the stores and on the radio and quietly hum the tunes under our breath. The scrumptious seasonal treats tease our taste buds and seduce us with scents of vanilla, cinnamon, and chocolate. And who can forget the dense, rich, jelly fruit filled fruitcakes. Well, maybe not the fruitcake.

Every family has their own traditions. Your family may gather for a Christmas Eve candlelight service. Maybe you enjoy driving around looking at Christmas lights together. I know of families that gather all of the supplies and spend a day baking their favorite holiday treats. It could be that you watch a favorite Christmas movie while eating popcorn curled up on the couch, snuggled in blankets. Of course there are pictures to be taken for the family Christmas cards, gifts to purchase and wrap, parties to organize and attend, and the list goes on and on.

This Christmas I challenge you to evaluate your activities and traditions to ensure that you have a joy filled, peaceful holiday season. In my book The Christmas Basket, the main character Maralee Jones realizes that she has lost the joy of Christmas. In her attempt to accomplish her holiday tasks and traditions, she has lost the true meaning of Christmas. Maralee finds that she isn’t patient, kind, or loving to those she encounters throughout her day. She is rushed, impatient, and rude. Maralee slips into a situation that reminds her of the true meaning of Christmas and what truly is important during the holiday season.

Maralee Jones is a fictional character, but a few of the life lessons she learns hit close to home with me. As a matter of fact, I can remember more than one Christmas that I wasn’t as joy-filled or peaceful as I should have been because I was so busy checking items off of my to do list to enjoy the season. I wanted everything to be perfect and I didn’t want my family to miss out on anything, but in the process I would become tired, frustrated, and grumpy. I was so busy running errands, picking the perfect Christmas cards, decorating, purchasing, and wrapping gifts, baking, attending Christmas programs and parties, that I was the exact opposite of Christ’s example. Like Maralee, I took a hard look at my actions and whose reflection others were seeing in me. I wasn’t proud of what I saw.

If we find ourselves becoming overwhelmed by the tasks that need to be done and our never ending to do list, we need to re-evaluate and pick the things that mean the most to us and choose to do a few things well. Enjoy the holiday season as we celebrate Jesus.

In Luke 10:40, we find that Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him (Jesus) and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” Jesus replied to her in verse 41, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” Like Martha I was distracted (busy) by all of the preparations and I neglected to sit at Jesus’ feet and listen and be filled with Him, like Mary.

As the poplar Disney character Elsa sings in the movie Frozen, “Let it go, let it go…” I have had to learn to let a few things go. As we celebrate Jesus’ birth and sharing his love with others, I encourage you to also celebrate Jesus’ character by being Christ-like this Christmas. If we want to reflect Jesus’ character, it is important that we remember to spend quiet time in Bible study, prayer, and quietly sitting at his feet.

This Christmas, take control of your calendar instead of allowing your calendar to control you. Together as a family (or as parents) decide what activities and traditions you will participate in and what things you can let go.

The holidays are a time of family, fun, and festivities, but don’t allow overscheduling to crowd Jesus out of Christmas.

If you want to read more about the story of Maralee Jones finding the true meaning of Christmas, you can purchase Ami’s book the “The Christmas Basket” here.