December is a nightmare for so many people.

We run around with our heads choped off, spend money we don’t have, over eat and then somehow pretend this is the month to celebrate the birth of our Savior Jesus.

Noise. Money. Conflict. Debt. Confusion. Don’t let the month of December be defined by these words.

Christmas is a time for remembering Jesus and refreshing your soul!

Here are seven ways to make this happen:

#1:  Worship Jesus 

This may sound obvious but don’t miss it. Spend time reflecting on Jesus. Stop in the middle of the busyness and worship and pray. Read the historical account of the birth of Christ.  Matthew 1-2 and Luke 1-3.  Spend time in the presence of our Savior.

One of my favorite services in the year is the Christmas eve services.  This is a time to reflect on Jesus and Him alone.

If you don’t read another word of this post….don’t miss this first point….spend time with Jesus and His word!

#2: Create a budget and stick to it.

Don’t overspend.  Create a modest budget and stick to it closely.  Don’t use credit cards.  It is stressful and irresponsible to overspend on gifts.

More gifts won’t make better Christmas.   The greatest gift you can give your kids is a healthy home. Dads, love your kid’s mom.  That is a gift worth giving.  Spend time with your kids. Your kids would rather you work less and be home than a bunch of gifts under the tree.

#3: Don’t over eat. 

I am serious about this one. Yes enjoy the turkey and piece of pie. But don’t pig out.  It is dumb to gain 5 pounds during the holidays. I speak from experience on this—enjoy your food but that third piece of pie is not worth it.

Enough said!

#4:  Say “no” to a couple of parties 

We all have some Christmas parties to attend. But my guess is you’re saying “yes” to one too many of these parties.   Say no to a couple. Don’t run yourself crazy during this season going from party to party.  Relax!  Enjoy!

#5:  Create family traditions. 

Create family traditions that make Christmas meaningful.  The Jones family has a whole routine on Christmas morning. We eat breakfast around the formal dining table, read the Christmas story together, open up our gifts one a at time and watch each other open the stockings. This takes around 2 hours..but it is worth it.

Traditions are more important than gifts!  Spend time thinking about meaningful traditions you can repeat year after year.

#6: Do something for the poor! 

People are hurting!  Scripture says, “Speak up for those who can’t speak for themselves.”. Christmas is a perfect time to help the poor and needy. Cut back on one gift for your kids and give this to someone hurting. Better yet–have your kids buy someone else a gift.

Teach your kids the heart of giving to the poor and needy. Go serve at a homeless shelter or adopt a family.

#7:  Forgive someone.

I have a theory why spending time with family can be so negative during the Christmas season. So many people have past hurts that they won’t let go of. Christmas magnifies your hurt and bitterness.

Decide right now to forgive someone who has hurt you!  Forgive your dad, mom, brother, sister or uncle or niece.

Decide this year not to fight with “uncle” George (I made up this name).  Accept the quirks of your family members. More than accept them–enjoy the differences.   Avoid conversations that cause conflict…such as politics or even religion :)

What is more important, being right or the relationship? Get off your soapbox. Decide this Christmas that you will enjoy those people in your life who are different.

Forgive past hurts.  Let go of anger. Stop the complaining. Enjoy your family!!!

 

Question: What are some of your favorite Christmas traditions?


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3 comments so far on “Seven Ways To Enjoy Christmas

  1. I think my favorite tradition stems from when my dad was a teen. Grandma had sent him and his brother out to find a Christmas tree on Christmas Eve and they brought back something more like a shrub. Grandma said it was “nonsense” and the Nonsense Tree was born. From that Christmas forward they often had two trees, a “real” Christmas Tree and then another “tree” that wasn’t really a tree. Some years we’ve used ugly plants, sometimes a tumble weed, and sometimes a cider bottle covered in stickers… but it’s a great way to remember the story now that Dad is gone =)

  2. Jen says:

    My family reads Gift of The Magi on Christmas eve, We all “try” to sleep over at my dad’s house (our own families are getting kind of big). Cook breakfast, eat at the dinning room table, go around the room and do one present at a time. Love family time, but we all throughout the years, have enjoyed the book.

  3. Shauna says:

    Excellent post. I am all for simplifying my life, and this list will help to keep us in check this crazy time of year. Thanks!

    PS – I posted a link to this post on my blog (http://www.myronette.com), hope you don’t mind. I want everyone to see this! :)

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