This is without a question my favorite time of year - the traditions, the festive times and the chaotic times, the wrapping, the shopping, all of it. It's easy to see other people this time of year and look in amazement how they seem to "have it all together", but fear not, no matter how much you LOVE Christmas (and I'm at the top of that list), life just isn't perfect. It's easy to get roped into that expectation - that life in December is perfect. Breaking news...it's not.
I realize everyone is different, but for me, the magic of Christmas is:
Decorating the house . Having hot cocoa & looking at Christmas lights with Collin & the kids (my favorite tradition) . The magic of Christmas through your kids eyes. The promise that a life following Jesus offers. The movies. The treats. The anticipation of the big day. The kids excitement when opening their gifts.
But, like with all things, the ugly truths of Christmas exist too:
I miss my dad. It's expensive. The expectations...oh the expectations. The overwhelming job of buying gifts for everyone and inevitably forgetting at least one unlucky soul each year. It's exhausting. That damn elf. That constant feeling that you have to make sure you're doing all the festive things with your kids to make "memories" when all they want to do is stay home & play with their toys.
So this year, if you're feeling all sorts of jolly or a little bit discouraged, take heart & be encouraged. We all struggle with something, whether it's finances, death or divorce, or just plain stress, it's real. Ultimately, Christmas is about celebrating the gift of Jesus and that unmatched act of LOVE.
So this week, go love on your people, love on yourself and just be grateful for life. The rest will follow. Life isn't perfect, and Christmas is no exception.